torsion balance


Also found in: Thesaurus, Encyclopedia, Wikipedia.

torsion balance

n.
An instrument with which small forces, as of electricity or magnetism, are measured by means of the torsion they produce in a wire or slender rod.
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.

torsion balance

n
(General Physics) an instrument used to measure small forces, esp electric or magnetic forces, by the torsion they produce in a thin wire, thread, or rod
Collins English Dictionary – Complete and Unabridged, 12th Edition 2014 © HarperCollins Publishers 1991, 1994, 1998, 2000, 2003, 2006, 2007, 2009, 2011, 2014

tor′sion bal`ance


n.
an instrument for measuring small forces by determining the amount of twisting they cause in a slender wire.
[1820–30]
Random House Kernerman Webster's College Dictionary, © 2010 K Dictionaries Ltd. Copyright 2005, 1997, 1991 by Random House, Inc. All rights reserved.
ThesaurusAntonymsRelated WordsSynonymsLegend:
Noun1.torsion balance - measuring instrument designed to measure small forces by the torsion they exert on a thin wiretorsion balance - measuring instrument designed to measure small forces by the torsion they exert on a thin wire
measuring device, measuring instrument, measuring system - instrument that shows the extent or amount or quantity or degree of something
Based on WordNet 3.0, Farlex clipart collection. © 2003-2012 Princeton University, Farlex Inc.
References in periodicals archive ?
At the Main Astronomical Observatory of National Academy of Sciences in Kiev, Ukraine, a high-sensitive torsion balance with a new design (termed "torsind", refering to the device's function as a torsion indicator) has been quasi-continuously measuring fluctuations of its angular deflection since 2009.
Kesling & Crafts (1962) outlined the physics of the torsion balance. In our version of the balance the beam and lengths of wire are used are shorter and piano wire was replaced with thinner wire of stainless steel, tungsten or silicon carbide with a central core of tungsten, all of which were found to be less affected by seawater.
The scientists placed four meticulously shaped 10-gram pieces of material -- two Earth-like, two Moon-like -- onto a spinning torsion balance, which twists if the Sun attracts one kind of material more strongly than another.
Heckel, suspended objects with compositions similar to that of the Earth and of the moon in a rotating torsion balance. That extremely sensitive device detects twisting forces.
Since weight is a force, such a torsion balance could be used
Instead, he used the torsion balance, which he was using in other experiments at the same time in order to investigate possible gravity gradients due to effects such as spatial orientation, terrestrial magnetism, etc.
As is the case for most measurements of G, the apparatus for the present experimental idea is also a variation of a torsion balance. Before describing the modifications needed so that a torsion balance can measure through-the-center motion, let's consider the context in which we find this gap in experimentation.
Fitzgerald and his coworkers at the Measurement Standards Laboratory in Lower Hutt, New Zealand, used a torsion balance, which consists of a copper bar dangling horizontally from a thin, tungsten wire fastened to the bar's midpoint (SN: 3/12/94, p.376).
The master stroke that made G measurable was the 1785 use of the torsion balance by Charles Coulomb, who first employed it to measure small electrostatic forces.
The torsion balance apparatus was first used by Cavendish in 1798 in a very simple form which permitted him to reach an unexpected accuracy.