hydrologic cycle

noun
the natural sequence through which water passes into the atmosphere as water vapor, precipitates to earth in liquid or solid form, and ultimately returns to the atmosphere through evaporation.
Also called water cycle.


Origin:
1955–60; hydrolog(y) + -ic

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Collins
World English Dictionary
hydrologic cycle
 
n
another name for water cycle

Collins English Dictionary - Complete & Unabridged 10th Edition
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American Heritage
Science Dictionary
hydrologic cycle   (hī'drə-lŏj'ĭk)  Pronunciation Key 


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The continuous process by which water is circulated throughout the Earth and its atmosphere. The Earth's water enters the atmosphere through evaporation from bodies of water and from ground surfaces. Plants and animals also add water vapor to the air by transpiration. As it rises into the atmosphere, the water vapor condenses to form clouds. Rain and other forms of precipitation return it to the Earth, where it flows into bodies of water and into the ground, beginning the cycle again. Also called water cycle.
The American Heritage® Science Dictionary
Copyright © 2002. Published by Houghton Mifflin. All rights reserved.
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American Heritage
Cultural Dictionary
hydrologic cycle [(heye-druh-loj-ik)]

The continuous circular process in which the water of the Earth evaporates from the oceans, condenses, falls to the Earth as rain or snow, and eventually returns to the oceans through run-off in rivers or streams. Some water is absorbed by plants and returned to the atmosphere as vapor.

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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Example sentences
The water cycle is also known as the hydrologic cycle.
Once out of storage it reenters the active hydrologic cycle.
The hydrologic cycle will keep evaporating it from the oceans, and raining it
  down in varying concentrations around the world.
In particular, the different effects on the surface and the atmosphere mean
  that the hydrologic cycle would be changed.
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