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mercury arc

noun, Electricity.
a bluish-green electric arc that has passed through a mercury-vapor cathode.
Origin of mercury arc
First recorded in 1915-20 Unabridged
Based on the Random House Dictionary, © Random House, Inc. 2017.
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Examples from the Web for mercury arc
Historical Examples
  • Indeed the distortion would be even greater than with the mercury arc, whose objectionable green hue is so well known.

    The Nature of Animal Light E. Newton Harvey
  • Further experimentation with the mercury arc led to the other two inventions, the converter and the interrupter.

    Boys' Second Book of Inventions Ray Stannard Baker
  • The mercury arc rectifier is a device for changing an alternating current into a direct current.

    Physics Willis Eugene Tower
  • A term usually used in connection with electrolytic apparatus, mercury arc rectifiers, and electric arcs.

  • This effect is perhaps best witnessed on viewing a line spectrum such as that of the mercury arc, focused upon a ground glass.

    Visual Illusions Matthew Luckiesh
British Dictionary definitions for mercury arc

mercury arc

  1. an electric discharge through ionized mercury vapour, producing a brilliant bluish-green light containing ultraviolet radiation
  2. (as modifier): a mercury-arc rectifier See also ignitron
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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