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circuit breaker

noun
1.
Electricity. Also called breaker. a device for interrupting an electric circuit to prevent excessive current, as that caused by a short circuit, from damaging the apparatus in the circuit or from causing a fire.
2.
any property-tax relief measure that reduces or limits property taxes for certain eligible taxpayers, as those with low income or the elderly.
Origin
1870-1875
1870-75, Americanism
Dictionary.com Unabridged
Based on the Random House Dictionary, © Random House, Inc. 2014.
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British Dictionary definitions for circuit-breaker

circuit breaker

noun
1.
a device that under abnormal conditions, such as a short circuit, interrupts the flow of current in an electrical circuit Sometimes shortened to breaker Compare fuse2 (sense 6)
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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circuit-breaker in Science
circuit breaker  
A switch that automatically interrupts the flow of electric current if the current exceeds a preset limit, measured in amperes. Circuit breakers are used most often as a safety precaution where excessive current through a circuit could be hazardous. Unlike fuses, they can usually be reset and reused.
The American Heritage® Science Dictionary
Copyright © 2002. Published by Houghton Mifflin. All rights reserved.
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