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[an-ahy-suh-trop-ik, -troh-pik, an-ahy-] /ænˌaɪ səˈtrɒp ɪk, -ˈtroʊ pɪk, ˌæn aɪ-/
Physics. of unequal physical properties along different axes.
Compare isotropic (def 1).
Botany. of different dimensions along different axes.
Origin of anisotropic
First recorded in 1875-80; an-1 + isotropic
Related forms
anisotropically, adverb
[an-ahy-so-truh-pee] /ˌæn aɪˈsɒ trə pi/ (Show IPA),
anisotropism, noun Unabridged
Based on the Random House Dictionary, © Random House, Inc. 2018.
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British Dictionary definitions for anisotropic


/ænˌaɪsəʊˈtrɒpɪk; ˌænaɪ-/
not isotropic; having different physical properties in different directions: anisotropic crystals
(of a plant) responding unequally to an external stimulus in different parts of the plant
Derived Forms
anisotropically, adverb
anisotropy (ˌænaɪˈsɒtrəpɪ) noun
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 anisotropic

1854; see an- (1) "not" + isotropic.

Online Etymology Dictionary, © 2010 Douglas Harper
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anisotropic in Medicine

anisotropic an·i·so·trop·ic (ān-ī'sə-trŏp'ĭk, -trō'pĭk)

  1. Not isotropic.

  2. Having physical properties that differ according to the direction of measurement.

an·i'so·trop'i·cal·ly adv.
an'i·sot'ro·pism (-sŏt'rə-pĭz'əm) or an'i·sot'ro·py (-sŏt'rə-pē) n.
The American Heritage® Stedman's Medical Dictionary
Copyright © 2002, 2001, 1995 by Houghton Mifflin Company. Published by Houghton Mifflin Company.
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anisotropic in Science
  (ān-ī'sə-trō'pĭk, -trŏp'ĭk, ān'ī-)   
Differing according to orientation, as light scattered by a liquid crystal; light striking the liquid crystal's surface at a 90° angle might not be reflected (so the surface appears dark when viewed head-on), while light striking it at shallower angles is reflected (so the surface appears illuminated when viewed from a shallow angle). Compare isotropic.
The American Heritage® Science Dictionary
Copyright © 2002. Published by Houghton Mifflin. All rights reserved.
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