equator

Science Dictionary
equator   (ĭ-kwā'tər)  Pronunciation Key 


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  1. An imaginary line forming a great circle around the Earth's surface, equidistant from the poles and in a plane perpendicular to the Earth's axis of rotation. It divides the Earth into the Northern and Southern hemispheres and is the basis from which latitude is measured.

  2. A similar circle on the surface of any celestial body.

  3. The celestial equator.


The American Heritage® Science Dictionary
Copyright © 2002. Published by Houghton Mifflin. All rights reserved.
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