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[sahy-kluh-tron, sik-luh-] /ˈsaɪ kləˌtrɒn, ˈsɪk lə-/
noun, Physics.
an accelerator in which particles are propelled in spiral paths by the use of a constant magnetic field.
1930-35; cyclo- + -tron Unabridged
Based on the Random House Dictionary, © Random House, Inc. 2014.
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Examples from the web for cyclotrons
  • But before these devices existed, cyclotrons were cheaper than linacs.
British Dictionary definitions for cyclotrons


a type of particle accelerator in which the particles spiral inside two D-shaped hollow metal electrodes placed facing each other under the effect of a strong vertical magnetic field, gaining energy by a high-frequency voltage applied between these electrodes
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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Word Origin and History for cyclotrons



1935, from cyclo- + ending from electron.

Online Etymology Dictionary, © 2010 Douglas Harper
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cyclotrons in Science

A type of particle accelerator that accelerates charged subatomic particles, such as protons and electrons, in an outwardly spiraling path, greatly increasing their energies. Cyclotrons are used to bring about high-speed particle collisions in order to study subatomic structures. Compare linear accelerator. See also synchrocyclotron. See Note at particle accelerator.
The American Heritage® Science Dictionary
Copyright © 2002. Published by Houghton Mifflin. All rights reserved.
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cyclotrons in Culture
cyclotron [(seye-kluh-tron)]

The first kind of particle accelerator built.

Note: Cyclotrons are now used for special research projects.
The American Heritage® New Dictionary of Cultural Literacy, Third Edition
Copyright © 2005 by Houghton Mifflin Company.
Published by Houghton Mifflin Company. All rights reserved.
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