tunnel

[ tuhn-l ]
/ ˈtʌn l /

noun

verb (used with object), tun·neled, tun·nel·ing or (especially British) tun·nelled, tun·nel·ling.

verb (used without object), tun·neled, tun·nel·ing or (especially British) tun·nelled, tun·nel·ling.

to make a tunnel or tunnels: to tunnel through the Alps.

Origin of tunnel

1400–50; late Middle English tonel (noun) < Middle French tonele, tonnelle funnel-shaped net, feminine of tonnel cask, diminutive of tonne tun; see -elle

Related forms

Definition for tunneling (2 of 2)

tunnel effect


noun

Physics. a quantum-mechanical process by which a particle can pass through a potential energy barrier that is higher than the energy of the particle: first postulated to explain the escape of alpha particles from atomic nuclei.

Origin of tunnel effect

First recorded in 1930–35
Also called tun·nel·ing.
Dictionary.com Unabridged Based on the Random House Unabridged Dictionary, © Random House, Inc. 2019

Examples from the Web for tunneling

British Dictionary definitions for tunneling (1 of 2)

tunnel

/ (ˈtʌnəl) /

noun

an underground passageway, esp one for trains or cars that passes under a mountain, river, or a congested urban area
any passage or channel through or under something
a dialect word for funnel
obsolete the flue of a chimney

verb -nels, -nelling or -nelled or US -nels, -neling or -neled

(tr) to make or force (a way) through or under (something)to tunnel a hole in the wall; to tunnel the cliff
(intr; foll by through, under, etc) to make or force a way (through or under something)he tunnelled through the bracken

Derived Forms

tunneller or US tunneler, noun

Word Origin for tunnel

C15: from Old French tonel cask, from tonne tun, from Medieval Latin tonna barrel, of Celtic origin

British Dictionary definitions for tunneling (2 of 2)

tunnel effect


noun

physics the phenomenon in which an object, usually an elementary particle, tunnels through a potential barrier even though it does not have sufficient energy to surmount the barrier. It is explained by wave mechanics and is the cause of alpha decay, field emission, and certain conduction processes in semiconductors
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

Medicine definitions for tunneling

tunnel

[ tŭnəl ]

n.

A passage located through or under a barrier.
The American Heritage® Stedman's Medical Dictionary Copyright © 2002, 2001, 1995 by Houghton Mifflin Company. Published by Houghton Mifflin Company.

Science definitions for tunneling

tunneling

[ tŭnə-lĭng ]

See quantum tunneling.
The American Heritage® Science Dictionary Copyright © 2011. Published by Houghton Mifflin Harcourt Publishing Company. All rights reserved.

Idioms and Phrases with tunneling

tunnel


see light at the end of the tunnel.

The American Heritage® Idioms Dictionary Copyright © 2002, 2001, 1995 by Houghton Mifflin Harcourt Publishing Company. Published by Houghton Mifflin Harcourt Publishing Company.