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fail-safeor fail·safe (fāl′sāf′)
1. Capable of compensating automatically and safely for a failure, as of a mechanism or power source.
2. Acting to discontinue a military attack on the occurrence of any of various predetermined conditions.
3. Guaranteed not to fail: "There is no fail-safe mechanism guaranteed either to contain or to restore presidential authority" (Arthur M. Schlesinger, Jr.).
A fail-safe mechanism.
American Heritage® Dictionary of the English Language, Fifth Edition. Copyright © 2016 by Houghton Mifflin Harcourt Publishing Company. Published by Houghton Mifflin Harcourt Publishing Company. All rights reserved.
1. (General Engineering) designed to return to a safe condition in the event of a failure or malfunction
2. (Military) (of a nuclear weapon) capable of being deactivated in the event of a failure or accident
3. unlikely to fail; foolproof
(intr) to return to a safe condition in the event of a failure or malfunction
Collins English Dictionary – Complete and Unabridged, 12th Edition 2014 © HarperCollins Publishers 1991, 1994, 1998, 2000, 2003, 2006, 2007, 2009, 2011, 2014
1. equipped with a secondary system that ensures continued operation even if the primary system fails.
2. denoting a system of safeguards in which bombers may not proceed past a prearranged point or nuclear weapons may not be armed without direct orders.
3. guaranteed to work; totally reliable.n.
4. a fail-safe mechanism, system, or the like.
Random House Kernerman Webster's College Dictionary, © 2010 K Dictionaries Ltd. Copyright 2005, 1997, 1991 by Random House, Inc. All rights reserved.
Past participle: fail-safed
Collins English Verb Tables © HarperCollins Publishers 2011
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|Noun||1.||fail-safe - a mechanism capable of returning to a safe state in case there is a failure or malfunction|
mechanism - device consisting of a piece of machinery; has moving parts that perform some function
|Adj.||1.||fail-safe - guaranteed not to fail; "a fail-safe recipe for cheese souffle"|
secure - free from danger or risk; "secure from harm"; "his fortune was secure"; "made a secure place for himself in his field"
|2.||fail-safe - eliminating danger by compensating automatically for a failure or malfunction; "a fail-safe device in a nuclear weapon to deactivate it automatically in the event of accident"|
safe - free from danger or the risk of harm; "a safe trip"; "you will be safe here"; "a safe place"; "a safe bet"
Based on WordNet 3.0, Farlex clipart collection. © 2003-2012 Princeton University, Farlex Inc.
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The American Heritage® Roget's Thesaurus. Copyright © 2013, 2014 by Houghton Mifflin Harcourt Publishing Company. Published by Houghton Mifflin Harcourt Publishing Company. All rights reserved.
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