a semiconductor diode whose capacitance changes to match applied voltage, used to tune circuits by varying the reactance.

1955–60; var(iable re)actor Unabridged
Based on the Random House Dictionary, © Random House, Inc. 2014.
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World English Dictionary
varactor (ˈvɛəˌræktə)
Compare varistor a semiconductor diode that acts as a voltage-dependent capacitor, being operated with a reverse bias
[C20: probably a blend of variable reactor]

Collins English Dictionary - Complete & Unabridged 10th Edition
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Example sentences
The varactor control should be sufficient to maintain phase-lock of the reference.
By varying the voltage to the varactor in an oscillator circuit.
The voltage drop across the divider is then sensed by a varactor bridge operational amplifier.
To hold any discriminator signals until verified by the varactor diode circuits.
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