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[tur-bin, -bahyn] /ˈtɜr bɪn, -baɪn/
any of various machines having a rotor, usually with vanes or blades, driven by the pressure, momentum, or reactive thrust of a moving fluid, as steam, water, hot gases, or air, either occurring in the form of free jets or as a fluid passing through and entirely filling a housing around the rotor.
Origin of turbine
1815-25; < French < Latin turbin-, stem of turbō something that spins, e.g., top, spindle, whirlwind; akin to turbid Unabridged
Based on the Random House Dictionary, © Random House, Inc. 2015.
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Examples from the web for turbine
  • Shareholders receive annual dividend checks based on how much electricity their turbine has generated.
  • First, the water approached the turbine buildings, which had been built with large shutters facing the sea.
  • He hopes to install a wind turbine on the surface that would generate as much electricity as the company consumes.
  • Steam, of course, can be cycled through a turbine to generate electricity.
  • Here's a link to a local television-news segment that covers the installation of the wind turbine.
  • We are finishing plans for a vertical access wind turbine on campus.
  • The favoured solution at the moment is a wind turbine to sap surplus energy from the breeze.
  • Air whips past the blades of a turbine, forcing it to spin.
  • The turbine is then installed in an external housing, containing the coils.
  • He is staring up at a giant wind turbine, towering several hundred feet high above the bleak desert mesa.
British Dictionary definitions for turbine


/ˈtɜːbɪn; -baɪn/
any of various types of machine in which the kinetic energy of a moving fluid is converted into mechanical energy by causing a bladed rotor to rotate. The moving fluid may be water, steam, air, or combustion products of a fuel See also reaction turbine, impulse turbine, gas turbine
Word Origin
C19: from French, from Latin turbō whirlwind, from turbāre to throw into confusion
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 turbine

1838, from French turbine, from Latin turbinem (nominative turbo) "spinning top, eddy, whirlwind," related to turba "turmoil, crowd" (see turbid). Originally applied to a wheel spinning on a vertical axis, driven by falling water. Turbo in reference to gas turbine engines is attested from 1904. Turbocharger is from 1934. Aeronautic turboprop is attested from 1945, with second element short for propeller.

Online Etymology Dictionary, © 2010 Douglas Harper
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turbine in Science
  (tûr'bĭn, -bīn')   

Any of various machines in which the kinetic energy of a moving fluid, such as water, steam, or gas, is converted to rotary motion. Turbines are used in boat propulsion systems, hydroelectric power generators, and jet aircraft engines. See also gas turbine.
The American Heritage® Science Dictionary
Copyright © 2002. Published by Houghton Mifflin. All rights reserved.
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