un polarized

polarized

[poh-luh-rahyzd]
adjective
1.
of or pertaining to a medium that exhibits polarization.
2.
(of an electric plug or outlet) designed so that the plug and outlet fit together in only one way.

Origin:
1920–25; polarize + -ed2

nonpolarized, adjective
unpolarized, adjective
Dictionary.com Unabridged
Based on the Random House Dictionary, © Random House, Inc. 2014.
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Etymonline
Word Origin & History

polarize
1811, from Fr. polariser, coined by Fr. physicist Étienne-Louis Malus (1775-1812) as a term in optics. Transf. sense of "to accentuate a division in a group or system" is first recorded 1949 in Arthur Koestler.
Online Etymology Dictionary, © 2010 Douglas Harper
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American Heritage
Science Dictionary
polarize   (pō'lə-rīz')  Pronunciation Key 
  1. To separate or accumulate positive and negative electric charges in two distinct regions. Polarized objects have an electric dipole moment and will undergo torque when placed in an external electric field.

  2. To magnetize a substance so that it has the properties of a magnetic dipole, such as having a north and south pole.

  3. To cause the electrical and magnetic fields associated with electromagnetic waves, especially light, to vibrate in a particular direction or path. The transverse electric and magnetic waves always vibrate at right angles to each other, but in ordinary unpolarized light sources, the direction of polarization of each wave is randomly distributed. Light can be polarized by reflection, and by passing through certain materials. See more at polarization.


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Copyright © 2002. Published by Houghton Mifflin. All rights reserved.
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