- to make active; cause to function or act.
- to render more reactive; excite: to activate a molecule.
- to induce radioactivity.
- to aerate (sewage) in order to accelerate decomposition of impure organic matter by microorganisms.
- to make (carbon, a catalyst, molecules, etc.) more active.
- to hasten (reactions) by various means, as heating.
- to place (a military unit or station) on an active status in an assigned capacity.
Origin of activate
SynonymsSee more synonyms on Thesaurus.com
1. actuate, start, turn on, set going.
1. stop, halt, check.
Dictionary.com Unabridged Based on the Random House Unabridged Dictionary, © Random House, Inc. 2018
Examples from the Web for activation
He went so far as to throw an “Activation Party” in their honor just weeks before his September arrest.The Father Who Made His Kids Have Sex With a Dog
John L. Smith
December 16, 2014
But non-military items also arrived for activation and test.The Machine That Saved The World
William Fitzgerald Jenkins
The scientist set the controls and turned on the activation switch.The Golden Skull
There is no known explanation for this type of activation of the enzyme.The Chemistry of Plant Life
Roscoe Wilfred Thatcher
How this activation is being aided and accelerated by another source of dynamic energy: irradiation from the sun.The Brain
It is usually measured by inserting materials of known composition and measuring their activation.The Atomic Fingerprint
- to make active or capable of action
- physics to make radioactive
- to increase the rate of (a reaction)
- to treat (a substance, such as carbon or alumina) so as to increase powers of adsorption
- physiol to prepare by arousal (the body or one of its organs (e.g. the brain)) for action
- to purify (sewage) by aeration
- US military to create, mobilize, or organize (a unit)
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
Word Origin and History for activation
1906, noun of action from activate (v.).
Online Etymology Dictionary, © 2010 Douglas Harper