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[breth-uh-lahy-zer] /ˈbrɛθ əˌlaɪ zər/
a brand of breath analyzer. Unabridged
Based on the Random House Dictionary, © Random House, Inc. 2015.
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British Dictionary definitions for Breathalyzer


trademark a device for estimating the amount of alcohol in the breath: used in testing people suspected of driving under the influence of alcohol
Word Origin
C20: breath + (an)alyser
Collins English Dictionary - Complete & Unabridged 2012 Digital Edition
© William Collins Sons & Co. Ltd. 1979, 1986 © HarperCollins
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Word Origin and History for Breathalyzer



1960, from breath + (an)alyzer; an earlier name for it was drunkometer (1934).

Online Etymology Dictionary, © 2010 Douglas Harper
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Encyclopedia Article for Breathalyzer

breath analyzer

device used by police to determine the amount of alcohol in the system of persons suspected of being intoxicated. In the analyzer, a precise amount of the suspect's exhaled breath is passed through a solution of potassium dichromate and sulfuric acid; the change in the colour of the solution is proportional to the amount of alcohol in the air sample, which, in turn, is directly related to the alcohol content of the blood. Driving ability is seriously impaired when the alcohol concentration in the blood exceeds 80 milligrams per 100 millilitres.

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Encyclopedia Britannica, 2008. Encyclopedia Britannica Online.
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