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paddle wheel

noun
1.
a wheel for propelling a ship, having a number of paddles entering the water more or less perpendicularly.
Origin
1675-1685
1675-85
Related forms
paddle-wheel, adjective
Dictionary.com Unabridged
Based on the Random House Dictionary, © Random House, Inc. 2014.
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Examples from the web for paddle wheel
  • In the simplest form, the paddle wheel blade is pushing on the water.
  • To accommodate the side barges, the paddle wheel was moved to the stern of the boat.
  • Because the fleshy prawn has migration habit, water flow should be maintained using paddle wheel aerators.
  • Later vessels were of the propeller type rather than paddle wheel, and had deeper drafts and were more enclosed.
  • The reciprocating engine has a piston that slides within a cylinder and is attached by means of a rod to a paddle wheel.
  • To eliminate drag and increase power-harnessing ability, the paddles flip on their way back around the paddle wheel.
British Dictionary definitions for paddle wheel

paddle wheel

noun
1.
a large wheel fitted with paddles, turned by an engine to propel a vessel on the water
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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Encyclopedia Article for paddle wheel

method of ship propulsion that was once widely employed but is now almost entirely superseded by the screw propeller. Early experiments with steam-driven paddles acting as oars led several inventors, including Robert Fulton, to mount the paddles in a wheel form, either at the stern or at the sides of the vessel.

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