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internal-combustion engine

an engine of one or more working cylinders in which the process of combustion takes place within the cylinders.
Origin of internal-combustion engine
First recorded in 1880-85 Unabridged
Based on the Random House Dictionary, © Random House, Inc. 2018.
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Examples from the Web for internal-combustion engines
Historical Examples
  • Reference was made in connection with the electrical ignition of internal-combustion engines (p. 101) to the induction coil.

    How it Works Archibald Williams
  • Shouts were heard, mingled with the puffing and spluttering of internal-combustion engines.

    The Blocking of Zeebrugge Alfred F. B. Carpenter
  • There are several methods of controlling the speed of internal-combustion engines.

    How it Works Archibald Williams
  • It emitted a sudden roaring sound, as of internal-combustion engines operating at full power, and lurched heavily.

    Morale Murray Leinster
  • In recent years, internal-combustion engines which use heavy kerosene or crude oil as fuel have been introduced.

  • The little improvements made in gasolene and other internal-combustion engines are hardly worth anything to the social aggregate.

    The Iron Ration

    George Abel Schreiner
British Dictionary definitions for internal-combustion engines

internal-combustion engine

a heat engine in which heat is supplied by burning the fuel in the working fluid (usually air)
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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internal-combustion engines in Science
internal-combustion engine

An engine whose fuel is burned inside the engine itself rather than in an outside furnace or burner. Gasoline and diesel engines are internal-combustion engines, as are gas turbine engines such as turbojets. Compare steam engine.
The American Heritage® Science Dictionary
Copyright © 2002. Published by Houghton Mifflin. All rights reserved.
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internal-combustion engines in Culture

internal-combustion engine definition

Any engine powered by burning fuel inside it (for example, a standard automobile engine). Internal-combustion engines normally burn fossil fuels and therefore are a major source of air pollution. (See smog.)

The New Dictionary of Cultural Literacy, Third Edition
Copyright © 2005 by Houghton Mifflin Company.
Published by Houghton Mifflin Company. All rights reserved.
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