spark-plug

spark plug

noun
1.
a device designed to fit in each cylinder of a gasoline-powered internal-combustion engine and to produce the electric spark for igniting the mixture of gasoline and air.
2.
Informal. a person who leads, inspires, or animates a group.

Origin:
1900–05

Dictionary.com Unabridged
Based on the Random House Dictionary, © Random House, Inc. 2014.
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Collins
World English Dictionary
spark plug
 
n
another name for sparking plug

Collins English Dictionary - Complete & Unabridged 10th Edition
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American Heritage
Science Dictionary
spark plug  


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A device in the cylinder head of an internal-combustion engine that ignites the fuel mixture by means of an electric spark. Spark plugs consist of two electrodes that are separated by an insulator except at their tips. When high voltage electricity is fed to one electrode, it jumps across the gap from one tip to the other as a spark. The voltage required to generate a spark is directly proportional to the size of the gap; in a car engine it is about 18,000 volts.
The American Heritage® Science Dictionary
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