combustion

noun
com·​bus·​tion | \ kəm-ˈbəs-chən How to pronounce combustion (audio) \

Definition of combustion

1 : an act or instance of burning Smoke is produced during combustion.
2 : a usually rapid chemical process (such as oxidation) that produces heat and usually light The carburetor mixes fuel with air for combustion. also : a slower oxidation (as in the body)
3 : violent agitation : tumult … periods of great social combustion alternating with quiescence …— Kurt Andersen

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Other Words from combustion

combustive \ kəm-​ˈbə-​stiv How to pronounce combustive (audio) \ adjective

Examples of combustion in a Sentence

Combustion may occur at high temperatures. This ratio of air to fuel results in better combustion.
Recent Examples on the Web Another risk is the shift to electric vehicles, which will ultimately eliminate a chunk of Czech and Slovak output tied to internal combustion engines. Peter Laca, Bloomberg.com, "China’s Luxury Thirst Keeps Eastern Europe Cranking Out Cars," 16 Nov. 2020 This will help offset the cost of the electric drivetrain, which is more expensive than traditional internal-combustion engines because of the battery and electric motors, Galhotra said. Keith Naughton, Fortune, "Ford adds a van to its lineup of electric vehicles," 13 Nov. 2020 China hopes to leverage its dominance in electric cars to take a greater share of the global auto market, much as the United States did in the mid-20th century with internal-combustion engines. Robinson Meyer, The Atlantic, "The Weekly Planet: 5 Ways to Think About Biden and Climate Change," 10 Nov. 2020 As for internal-combustion engines, Biden plans on working with states on stricter emissions guidelines. Roberto Baldwin, Car and Driver, "Biden Presidency Likely to Mean More EVs, Auto-Industry Stability," 9 Nov. 2020 Time is starting to run out for vehicles powered purely by internal combustion engines, and the auto industry knows it. Jonathan M. Gitlin, Ars Technica, "Bentley will ditch internal combustion engines by 2030," 6 Nov. 2020 Repsol says the new synthetic fuels could power the combustion engines already in cars, airplanes, trucks and other machinery. Giulia Petroni, WSJ, "Major Energy Companies Bet Big on Hydrogen," 22 Oct. 2020 Legacy and startup automakers alike have hundreds of electric vehicles in the development pipeline, with industry projections that EV sales will surpass traditional internal combustion engines by 2030. Tribune News Service, oregonlive, "$70k electric SUV with vegan leather seats? It’s not an episode of ‘Portlandia.' It’s about to become real," 14 Nov. 2020 Legacy and startup automakers alike have hundreds of electric vehicles in the development pipeline, with industry projections that EV sales will surpass traditional internal combustion engines by 2030. Robert Channick, chicagotribune.com, "Rivian to deliver $75,000 Illinois-built electric truck in June, complete with 300-mile range and vegan leather seats," 12 Nov. 2020

These example sentences are selected automatically from various online news sources to reflect current usage of the word 'combustion.' Views expressed in the examples do not represent the opinion of Merriam-Webster or its editors. Send us feedback.

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First Known Use of combustion

15th century, in the meaning defined at sense 1

History and Etymology for combustion

Middle English combustioun "burning, calcination," borrowed from Anglo-French & Late Latin; Anglo-French combustion, borrowed from Late Latin combustiōn-, combustiō "burning up (of the dead or by the fires in hell)," from Latin combus-, variant stem of combūrere "to destroy with fire, reduce to ashes" + -tiōn-, tiō, suffix of verbal action — more at combust

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Time Traveler for combustion

Time Traveler

The first known use of combustion was in the 15th century

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Statistics for combustion

Last Updated

1 Dec 2020

Cite this Entry

“Combustion.” Merriam-Webster.com Dictionary, Merriam-Webster, https://www.merriam-webster.com/dictionary/combustion. Accessed 1 Dec. 2020.

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More Definitions for combustion

combustion

noun
How to pronounce combustion (audio)

English Language Learners Definition of combustion

technical
: the act of burning
technical : a chemical reaction that occurs when oxygen combines with other substances to produce heat and usually light

combustion

noun
com·​bus·​tion | \ kəm-ˈbəs-chən How to pronounce combustion (audio) \

Kids Definition of combustion

: the process of burning

combustion

noun
com·​bus·​tion | \ kəm-ˈbəs-chən How to pronounce combustion (audio) \

Medical Definition of combustion

: a usually very rapid chemical process (as oxidation) that produces heat and usually light also : a slower oxidation (as in the body)

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More from Merriam-Webster on combustion

Nglish: Translation of combustion for Spanish Speakers

Britannica English: Translation of combustion for Arabic Speakers

Britannica.com: Encyclopedia article about combustion

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