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rotor

[roh-ter] /ˈroʊ tər/
noun
1.
Electricity. a rotating member of a machine.
Compare stator (def 1).
2.
Aeronautics. a system of rotating airfoils, as the horizontal ones of a helicopter or of the compressor of a jet engine.
3.
any of a number of tall, cylindrical devices mounted on a special ship (rotor ship) and rotated in such a way that the Magnus effect of wind impinging on the cylinders is used to drive and maneuver the vessel.
4.
(in a self-winding watch) a weight eccentrically mounted on an arbor for keeping the mainspring wound.
Origin
1873
1873; short for rotator
Dictionary.com Unabridged
Based on the Random House Dictionary, © Random House, Inc. 2014.
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Examples from the web for rotor
  • But the smaller the turbine, the faster the rotor must spin for its tips to achieve near-sonic speed.
  • The helicopter does not quite fill the bill, simply because its speed is limited on account of the rotor configuration.
  • Army officers learn in a general way to use a helicopter's rotor wash to drive away a crowd, he explained.
  • Army managed to conceal the whomp-whomp of helicopter rotor blades, but photos of the wreckage offer clues.
  • With enough distance between the lee side of one obstacle and the windward side of the next, a rotor can form.
  • When gusts whip the rotor, the generator shaft is free to speed up in response.
  • What a hovering helicopter does is almost identical, moving its rotor in a horizontal plane.
  • When charged with static electricity, the rotor would actually spin.
  • The new craft's body was constructed around a rotor, which allowed the replica to be manipulated atop a five-story-tall column.
  • His grandfather was sliced in half by a rotor in an accident at a mining camp.
British Dictionary definitions for rotor

rotor

/ˈrəʊtə/
noun
1.
the rotating member of a machine or device, esp the armature of a motor or generator or the rotating assembly of a turbine Compare stator
2.
a device having blades radiating from a central hub that is rotated to produce thrust to lift and propel a helicopter
3.
the revolving arm of the distributor of an internal-combustion engine
4.
a violent rolling wave of air occurring in the lee of a mountain or hill, in which the air rotates about a horizontal axis
Word Origin
C20: shortened form of rotator
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 rotor
n.

1873, irregular shortening of rotator (see rotate (v.)), originally in mathematics. Mechanical sense is attested from 1903; specifically of helicopters from 1930.

Online Etymology Dictionary, © 2010 Douglas Harper
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