compression

[kuh m-presh-uh n]
noun
  1. the act of compressing.
  2. the state of being compressed.
  3. the effect, result, or consequence of being compressed.
  4. (in internal-combustion engines) the reduction in volume and increase of pressure of the air or combustible mixture in the cylinder prior to ignition, produced by the motion of the piston toward the cylinder head after intake.
  5. Also called data compression. Computers. reduction of the storage space required for data by changing its format.
Also com·pres·sure [kuh m-presh-er] /kəmˈprɛʃ ər/ (for defs 1, 2).

Origin of compression

1350–1400; Middle English (< Anglo-French) < Latin compressiōn- (stem of compressiō), equivalent to compress(us) past participle of comprimere to press together (see com-, press1) + -iōn- -ion
Related formscom·pres·sion·al, adjectivenon·com·pres·sion, nouno·ver·com·pres·sion, nounpre·com·pres·sion, nounsu·per·com·pres·sion, noun
Dictionary.com Unabridged Based on the Random House Unabridged Dictionary, © Random House, Inc. 2018

Examples from the Web for compressional

Historical Examples of compressional

  • The first indication of an earthquake is often a sharp thud, signaling the arrival of compressional waves.

    Earthquakes

    Kaye M. Shedlock

  • A compressional wave of air had been started in the far north and had spread out over the earth with the velocity of sound.


British Dictionary definitions for compressional

compression

noun
  1. Also called: compressure (kəmˈprɛʃə) the act of compressing or the condition of being compressed
  2. an increase in pressure of the charge in an engine or compressor obtained by reducing its volume
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 compressional

compression

n.

c.1400, from Middle French compression (14c.), from Latin compressionem (nominative compressio) "a pressing together," noun of action from past participle stem of comprimere (see compress (v.)). Related: Compressional. Compressional wave is attested from 1887.

Online Etymology Dictionary, © 2010 Douglas Harper

compressional in Medicine

compression

[kəm-prĕshən]
n.
  1. condensation
  2. The state of being compressed.
The American Heritage® Stedman's Medical Dictionary Copyright © 2002, 2001, 1995 by Houghton Mifflin Company. Published by Houghton Mifflin Company.

compressional in Science

compression

[kəm-prĕshən]
  1. A force that tends to shorten or squeeze something, decreasing its volume.
  2. The degree to which a substance has decreased in size (in volume, length, or some other dimension) after being or while being subject to stress. See also strain.
  3. The re-encoding of data (usually the binary data used by computers) into a form that uses fewer bits of information than the original data. Compression is often used to speed the transmission of data such as text or visual images, or to minimize the memory resources needed to store such data.
The American Heritage® Science Dictionary Copyright © 2011. Published by Houghton Mifflin Harcourt Publishing Company. All rights reserved.

compressional in Culture

compression

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