• synonyms


noun Electricity.
  1. the centimeter-gram-second unit of magnetic intensity, equal to the magnetic pole of unit strength when undergoing a force of one dyne in a vacuum. Abbreviation: Oe
  2. (formerly) the unit of magnetic reluctance equal to the reluctance of a centimeter cube of vacuum between parallel surfaces. Abbreviation: Oe
Show More

Origin of oersted

First recorded in 1875–80; named after H. C. Oersted


[ur-sted; Danish œr-stith]
  1. Hans Chris·tian [hahns kris-tyahn] /hɑns ˈkrɪs tyɑn/, 1777–1851, Danish physicist.
Show More
Dictionary.com Unabridged Based on the Random House Unabridged Dictionary, © Random House, Inc. 2018

Examples from the Web for oersted

Historical Examples of oersted

  • It can hardly be said that Oersted invented a machine; but Faraday certainly did.


    Bradley A. Fiske

  • In Berlin, a letter of Oersted's procured me the acquaintance of Chamisso.

    The True Story of My Life

    Hans Christian Andersen

  • Oersted, of Copenhagen, made important discoveries in electromagnetism.

  • Oersted had proven that an electric current acts on a magnet.

    The Story of Great Inventions

    Elmer Ellsworth Burns

  • The effect of Oersted's demonstration is almost incomprehensible.

British Dictionary definitions for oersted


  1. the cgs unit of magnetic field strength; the field strength that would cause a unit magnetic pole to experience a force of 1 dyne in a free space. It is equivalent to 79.58 amperes per metreSymbol: Oe
Show More

Word Origin for oersted

C20: named after H. C. Oersted (1777–1851), Danish physicist, who discovered electromagnetism
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

oersted in Medicine


  1. The centimeter-gram-second electromagnetic unit of magnetic intensity, equal to the magnetic intensity one centimeter from a unit magnetic pole.
Show More
The American Heritage® Stedman's Medical Dictionary Copyright © 2002, 2001, 1995 by Houghton Mifflin Company. Published by Houghton Mifflin Company.

oersted in Science


  1. The unit of magnetic field strength in the centimeter-gram-second system. A unit magnetic monopole in a magnetic field with a strength of one oersted would be subjected to a force of one dyne. It is equal to 79.577 amperes per meter.
Show More


  1. Danish physicist who is credited as the founder of the science of electromagnetism. Oersted established the connection between electric current and magnetic force when he accidentally discovered that a compass's magnetic needle is deflected at right angles when placed next to a conductor carrying an electric current. The oersted unit of magnetic field strength is named after him.
Show More
The American Heritage® Science Dictionary Copyright © 2011. Published by Houghton Mifflin Harcourt Publishing Company. All rights reserved.