rheostat

[ree-uh-stat]
noun Electricity.
  1. an adjustable resistor so constructed that its resistance may be changed without opening the circuit in which it is connected, thereby controlling the current in the circuit.

Origin of rheostat

First recorded in 1843; rheo- + -stat
Related formsrhe·o·stat·ic, adjective
Dictionary.com Unabridged Based on the Random House Unabridged Dictionary, © Random House, Inc. 2018

Examples from the Web for rheostat

Historical Examples of rheostat


British Dictionary definitions for rheostat

rheostat

noun
  1. a variable resistance, usually consisting of a coil of wire with a terminal at one end and a sliding contact that moves along the coil to tap off the current
Derived Formsrheostatic, adjective
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 rheostat
n.

1843, coined by English physicist Sir Charles Wheatstone (1802-1875) from Greek rheos "a flowing, stream" (from PIE root *sreu-, see rheum) + -stat "regulating device." Related: Rheostatic.

Online Etymology Dictionary, © 2010 Douglas Harper

rheostat in Science

rheostat

[rēə-stăt′]
  1. See under resistor.
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