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arc light

noun
1.
Also, arc lamp. a lamp in which the light source is a high-intensity electric arc either between carbon rods in air or between metal electrodes in a xenon gas atmosphere enclosed in a quartz bulb.
2.
the light produced by such a lamp.
Compare carbon arc, xenon arc.
Origin
1875-1880
1875-80, Americanism
Dictionary.com Unabridged
Based on the Random House Dictionary, © Random House, Inc. 2014.
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British Dictionary definitions for arc lamp

arc light

noun
1.
a light source in which an arc between two electrodes, usually carbon, produces intense white illumination Also called arc lamp
Collins English Dictionary - Complete & Unabridged 2012 Digital Edition
© William Collins Sons & Co. Ltd. 1979, 1986 © HarperCollins
Publishers 1998, 2000, 2003, 2005, 2006, 2007, 2009, 2012
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arc lamp in Science
arc lamp  
An electric light in which a current produces light when an arc traverses the gap between two incandescent electrodes in a container filled with a gas, such as xenon. The two electrodes are usually made of carbon and are eventually vaporized by the heat they generate. Arc lamps are used to produce intense light (as in spotlights) and to produce heat for welding.
The American Heritage® Science Dictionary
Copyright © 2002. Published by Houghton Mifflin. All rights reserved.
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Encyclopedia Article for arc lamp

device for producing light by maintaining an electric arc across a gap between two conductors; light comes from the heated ends of the conductors (usually carbon rods) as well as from the arc itself. Arc lamps are used in applications requiring great brightness, as in searchlights, large film projectors, and floodlights. The term arc lamp is usually restricted to lamps with an air gap between consumable carbon electrodes, but fluorescent and other electric discharge lamps generate light from arcs in gas-filled tubes. Some ultraviolet lamps are of the arc type.

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Encyclopedia Britannica, 2008. Encyclopedia Britannica Online.
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