adjective Alf·vén·ic \¦al(f)-¦vā-nik, -¦ve-\

Definition of Alfvénic

  1. :  of, relating to, or having the characteristics of an Alfvén wave Alfvénic velocity In a magnetic nozzle the Alfvén speed plays a role similar to that of the sound speed in a conventional nozzle. The transition from sub-Alfvénic to super-Alfvénic flow delineates a boundary beyond which the flow downstream has no effect upstream—which ensures that the detachment exerts no drag on the rocket. — Franklin R. Chang Díaz, Scientific American, November 2000

Love words? You must — there are over 200,000 words in our free online dictionary, but you are looking for one that’s only in the Merriam-Webster Unabridged Dictionary.

Join MWU now and get access to America’s largest dictionary, with:

  • 300,000 words that aren't in our free dictionary
  • Expanded definitions, etymologies, and usage notes
  • Advanced search features
  • Ad free!

Origin and Etymology of alfvénic

Hannes Alfvén + 1-ic — more at Alfvén wave

First Known Use: 1964

Seen and Heard

What made you want to look up Alfvénic? Please tell us where you read or heard it (including the quote, if possible).


a rounded knoll or a ridge of ice

Get Word of the Day daily email!