compressor

[kuhm-pres-er]
noun
1.
a person or thing that compresses.
2.
Anatomy. a muscle that compresses some part of the body.
3.
Surgery. an instrument for compressing a part of the body.
4.
a pump or other machine for reducing volume and increasing pressure of gases in order to condense the gases, drive pneumatically powered machinery, etc.
5.
Electronics. a transducer that produces an output with a range of voltages whose ratio is smaller than that of the range of the input signal. Compare expander ( def 2 ).

Origin:
1745–55; compress + -or2

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Collins
World English Dictionary
compressor (kəmˈprɛsə)
 
n
1.  any reciprocating or rotating device that compresses a gas
2.  the part of a gas turbine that compresses the air before it enters the combustion chambers
3.  any muscle that causes compression of any part or structure
4.  a medical instrument for holding down a part of the body
5.  expander Compare compander an electronic device for reducing the variation in signal amplitude in a transmission system

Collins English Dictionary - Complete & Unabridged 10th Edition
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Etymonline
Word Origin & History

compressor
1839, from L. compressor, agent noun from comprimere (see compress). As a type of surgical instrument, from 1870. As short for air compressor, from 1874.
Online Etymology Dictionary, © 2010 Douglas Harper
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American Heritage
Medical Dictionary

compressor com·pres·sor (kəm-prěs'ər)
n.
A muscle that causes compression of a structure upon contraction.

The American Heritage® Stedman's Medical Dictionary
Copyright © 2002, 2001, 1995 by Houghton Mifflin Company. Published by Houghton Mifflin Company.
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Example sentences for compressors
Modern versions use rotary compressors and have more sophisticated variable governors.
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