birefringence

play
noun bi·re·frin·gence \ˌbī-ri-ˈfrin-jən(t)s\

Definition of birefringence

  1. :  the refraction of light in an anisotropic material (such as calcite) in two slightly different directions to form two rays

birefringent

play \-jənt\ adjective

Origin and Etymology of birefringence

International Scientific Vocabulary 1bi- + refringent refracting, from Latin refringent-, refringens, present participle of refringere to break up — more at refract


First Known Use: 1879


Medical Dictionary

birefringence

play
noun bi·re·frin·gence \ˌbī-ri-ˈfrin-jən(t)s\

Medical Definition of birefringence

  1. :  the refraction of light in an anisotropic material in two slightly different directions to form two rays; also :  the visual effect produced by birefringence The diagnosis was made before scanning in 22 patients by the detection of deposits with apple-green birefringence …—Philip N. Hawkins et al., The New England Journal of Medicine, 23 Aug. 1990

birefringent

\-jənt\play adjective

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