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reciprocating engine

any engine employing the rectilinear motion of one or more pistons in cylinders.
Also called displacement engine, piston engine.
Origin of reciprocating engine
1815-25 Unabridged
Based on the Random House Dictionary, © Random House, Inc. 2015.
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Examples from the Web for reciprocating engine
Historical Examples
  • It does not derive its power from the static force of steam expanding behind a piston, as in a reciprocating engine.

  • In the cylinder of a reciprocating engine the steam enters alternately.

  • The first reciprocating engine depended on this to do the actual work.

    Motors James Slough Zerbe
  • The engineers' accommodation was in the next compartment directly alongside the casing of the reciprocating engine room.

    Loss of the Steamship 'Titanic' British Government
  • The first steam engine that was really efficient was the reciprocating engine produced by Watt.

    Invention Bradley A. Fiske
  • Alongside the reciprocating engine room were the engineers' stores and workshop.

    Loss of the Steamship 'Titanic' British Government
  • "Yes, that is a double-acting or reciprocating engine of a more perfect type," her father returned.

    Steve and the Steam Engine Sara Ware Bassett
  • Fig. 17 is a skeleton diagram of the simplest form of reciprocating engine.

    How it Works Archibald Williams
British Dictionary definitions for reciprocating engine

reciprocating engine

an engine in which one or more pistons move backwards and forwards inside a cylinder or cylinders
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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