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impermeable

[im-pur-mee-uh-buh l]
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adjective
  1. not permeable; impassable.
  2. Chemistry, Geology. (of porous substances, rocks, etc.) not permitting the passage of a fluid through the pores, interstices, etc.
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Origin of impermeable

From the Late Latin word impermeābilis, dating back to 1690–1700. See im-2, permeable
Related formsim·per·me·a·bil·i·ty, im·per·me·a·ble·ness, nounim·per·me·a·bly, adverb
Can be confusedimpermeable impervious
Dictionary.com Unabridged Based on the Random House Unabridged Dictionary, © Random House, Inc. 2018

Related Words

inflexibilitytoughnesshardnessdurabilitysoliditydensityresistancecompactnessimperviousnesstemperrigidityimpermeabilityinelasticityimpenetrability

Examples from the Web for impermeability

Historical Examples

  • It is only when in combination that it exhibits this impermeability to the obscure rays.

    The Glaciers of the Alps

    John Tyndall

  • The impermeability of plastic clay to water is a characteristic which is important for many purposes.

  • The fused portion fills the pores or interstices of the material, making—when cold—a ware of great strength and impermeability.

  • The integrity and impermeability of this asphalt coat are quite as vital as constant saturation.


British Dictionary definitions for impermeability

impermeable

adjective
  1. (of a substance) not allowing the passage of a fluid through interstices; not permeable
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Derived Formsimpermeability or impermeableness, nounimpermeably, adverb
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 impermeability

impermeable

adj.

1690s, from French imperméable, from Late Latin impermeabilis, from assimilated form of in- "not, opposite of" (see in- (1)) + permeabilis (see permeable).

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Online Etymology Dictionary, © 2010 Douglas Harper

impermeability in Medicine

impermeable

(ĭm-pûrmē-ə-bəl)
adj.
  1. Impossible to permeate; not permitting passage.
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Related formsim•per′me•a•bili•ty null n.
The American Heritage® Stedman's Medical Dictionary Copyright © 2002, 2001, 1995 by Houghton Mifflin Company. Published by Houghton Mifflin Company.

impermeability in Science

impermeable

[ĭm-pûrmē-ə-bəl]
  1. Relating to a material through which substances, such as liquids or gases, cannot pass. Some substances, such as some types of contact lenses, are permeable to gas but impermeable to liquid.
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The American Heritage® Science Dictionary Copyright © 2011. Published by Houghton Mifflin Harcourt Publishing Company. All rights reserved.