verb (used with object), ac·ti·vat·ed, ac·ti·vat·ing.
to make active; cause to function or act.
- to render more reactive; excite: to activate a molecule.
- to induce radioactivity.
to aerate (sewage) in order to accelerate decomposition of impure organic matter by microorganisms.
- to make (carbon, a catalyst, molecules, etc.) more active.
- to hasten (reactions) by various means, as heating.
to place (a military unit or station) on an active status in an assigned capacity.
Origin of activate
Synonyms for activate
Antonyms for activate
Dictionary.com Unabridged Based on the Random House Unabridged Dictionary, © Random House, Inc. 2019
to make active or capable of action
physics to make radioactive
- to increase the rate of (a reaction)
- to treat (a substance, such as carbon or alumina) so as to increase powers of adsorption
physiol to prepare by arousal (the body or one of its organs (e.g. the brain)) for action
to purify (sewage) by aeration
US military to create, mobilize, or organize (a unit)
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
Online Etymology Dictionary, © 2010 Douglas Harper