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exoskeleton

[ek-soh-skel-i-tn] /ˌɛk soʊˈskɛl ɪ tn/
noun, Zoology
1.
an external covering or integument, especially when hard, as the shells of crustaceans (opposed to endoskeleton).
Origin
1840-1850
1840-50; exo- + skeleton
Related forms
exoskeletal, adjective
Dictionary.com Unabridged
Based on the Random House Dictionary, © Random House, Inc. 2014.
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Examples from the web for exoskeletal
  • He developed the power suits, exoskeletal suits of armor coupled with advanced weapons.
British Dictionary definitions for exoskeletal

exoskeleton

/ˌɛksəʊˈskɛlɪtən/
noun
1.
the protective or supporting structure covering the outside of the body of many animals, such as the thick cuticle of arthropods Compare endoskeleton
Derived Forms
exoskeletal, adjective
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 exoskeletal

exoskeleton

n.

1847, from exo- + skeleton. Introduced by English anatomist Sir Richard Owen (1804-1892).

Online Etymology Dictionary, © 2010 Douglas Harper
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exoskeletal in Medicine

exoskeleton ex·o·skel·e·ton (ěk'sō-skěl'ĭ-tn)
n.

  1. All hard parts, such as hair, teeth, and nails, that develop from the ectoderm or mesoderm in vertebrates.

  2. A hard outer structure, such as the shell of an insect, that provides protection or support for an organism.

The American Heritage® Stedman's Medical Dictionary
Copyright © 2002, 2001, 1995 by Houghton Mifflin Company. Published by Houghton Mifflin Company.
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exoskeletal in Science
exoskeleton
  (ěk'sō-skěl'ĭ-tn)   
A hard, protective outer body covering of an animal, such as an insect, crustacean, or mollusk. The exoskeletons of insects and crustaceans are largely made of chitin. Compare endoskeleton.
The American Heritage® Science Dictionary
Copyright © 2002. Published by Houghton Mifflin. All rights reserved.
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Encyclopedia Article for exoskeletal

exoskeleton

rigid or articulated envelope that supports and protects the soft tissues of certain animals. The term includes the calcareous housings of sessile invertebrates such as clams but is most commonly applied to the chitinous integument of arthropods, such as insects, spiders, and crustaceans. The arthropod exoskeleton, formed from the epidermis, is composed of an outer waxy, water-resistant layer over chitinous horny and flexible layers. In terrestrial species this covering has small breathing holes (spiracles). By preventing dehydration the exoskeleton has allowed arthropods, especially insects, to invade most terrestrial habitats. The flexible joints in the exoskeleton of creatures such as the lobster allow great freedom of movement. An exoskeleton does not grow; it must be molted regularly and a new one secreted, at which time the animal is soft and vulnerable to both predators and environmental changes

Learn more about exoskeleton with a free trial on Britannica.com
Encyclopedia Britannica, 2008. Encyclopedia Britannica Online.
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