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The Collaborative International Dictionary

Dielectric \Di`e*lec"tric\, n. [Pref. dia- + electric.] (Elec.) Any substance or medium that transmits the electric force by a process different from conduction, as in the phenomena of induction; a nonconductor, separating a body electrified by induction, from the electrifying body. [1913 Webster] ||


a. (electrically) insulating n. (context physics English) An electrically insulate or nonconducting material considered for its electric susceptibility, i.e. its property of polarization when exposed to an external electric field.


n. a material such as glass or porcelain with negligible electrical or thermal conductivity [syn: insulator, nonconductor] [ant: conductor]


A dielectric material (dielectric for short) is an electrical insulator that can be polarized by an applied electric field. When a dielectric is placed in an electric field, electric charges do not flow through the material as they do in a conductor, but only slightly shift from their average equilibrium positions causing dielectric polarization. Because of dielectric polarization, positive charges are displaced toward the field and negative charges shift in the opposite direction. This creates an internal electric field that reduces the overall field within the dielectric itself. If a dielectric is composed of weakly bonded molecules, those molecules not only become polarized, but also reorient so that their symmetry axes align to the field.

The study of dielectric properties concerns storage and dissipation of electric and magnetic energy in materials. Dielectrics are important for explaining various phenomena in electronics, optics, and solid-state physics.

Usage examples of "dielectric".

Nonetheless, the preferred material for capacitor dielectrics is certainly sheet mica.

Ultimately from sessile types that break down ores, manufacture the basic alloys, and concentrate more dielectric energy than they use.

Had the false clicks been random, they would have caused the zinc torus to wobble on its way to smelting, or recognizably wrong information about its function to have been applicable to dielectrics instead of conductors, say, which would have given the Snowflake pause and made it ask again.

Investigations on the conductibility provoked in dielectric liquids by the rays of radium and the Roentgen rays.

Hence, high voltage capacitors are usually made of materials with a high dielectric strength (a measure of the ability of a material, per unit thickness, to resist arcing).

Capacitors carried a charge according to the product of the plate area and number, times the dielectric constant of insulation, all divided by the thickness of the dielectric.

So in the future, they had apparently found a material with a nearly infinite dielectric constant!

And had water had a different dielectric constant, not as high, protein molecules would not have been able to form in it, and therefore there could not have been protein-based life.

Yet does anyone ask, in science, whose helping hand intervened here, and who gave water its dielectric constant or provided for the relative lightness of its ice?

Magnetic and gravitic properties, thermal energy, dielectric constant, seismic, color.

Electrostatic pickups above and below the turntable would fluctuate with changes in the dielectric constant which had been impressed by the recording, and these changes were amplified for the scanners.

But imagine, now, if some means could be found to lower the dielectric constant of this partition between the cells.

Each impinging radiation caused the dielectric constant of the hull to change so that it reradiated that exact frequency, at the same intensity as received, but a hundred and eighty degrees out of phase.

To achieve a high capacitance, you want the dielectric to be as thin a sheet as its dielectric strength permits, and you want to maximize the effective cross section (the surface area of one flat dielectric sheet, times the number of those sheets).

Think of getting condenser plates so close togetherperhaps only one or two molecules apartand still have a dielectric strength capable of resisting thousands of volts!