ki·​lo·​volt | \ ˈki-lə-ˌvōlt How to pronounce kilovolt (audio) , ˈkē-lə- \

Definition of kilovolt

: a unit of potential difference equal to 1000 volts

Examples of kilovolt in a Sentence

Recent Examples on the Web Operating at voltages of 300 kilovolts, more than 2500 times stronger than electricity from a U.S. wall socket, the machine requires a bulky transformer and thick, heavily insulated cabling. Eric Hand, Science | AAAS, "‘We need a people’s cryo-EM.’ Scientists hope to bring revolutionary microscope to the masses," 23 Jan. 2020 For safety and other reasons, third-rail systems typically operate at 750 volts DC, a much lower voltage than overhead lines, which in Britain run at 25 kilovolts AC. The Economist, "Sun on the rails Solar-powered trains could make rail transport greener," 21 Nov. 2019 Motors and Propellers Motors are rated in kilovolts, or rpm generated per volt. Trevor Bauer, Popular Mechanics, "How To Build Your Own Drone," 23 Aug. 2018 However, in a thunderstorm those levels can rise up to 10 kilovolts per meter, exponentially larger. David Grossman, Popular Mechanics, "Spiders Can Harness Electric Fields to Fly," 5 July 2018 And before the electricity leaves the tower, a transformer inside the nacelle steps it up from 690 volts to 34.5 kilovolts. Matt Allyn, Popular Mechanics, "The Wind Catchers," 6 Feb. 2018 To get power to Foxconn, ATC would add a second 345 kilovolt transmission circuit along 12 miles of existing lines from Pleasant Prairie north to Mount Pleasant. Rick Romell, Milwaukee Journal Sentinel, "Foxconn would get $140 million electricity project, use more power than any plant in state," 12 Dec. 2017 The substation, which would convert a 33-kilovolt current to a lower distribution voltage of 12 kilovolts , is needed to meet the growing power demand in the area, according to Edison. Tomoya Shimura, Orange County Register, "Edison’s substation project in Irvine at ‘stalemate’," 11 Jan. 2017 An electrical substation inside the skyway converts 15 kilovolts from the power company to the 480 volts needed for road lighting. Dylan Tweney, WIRED, "Gallery: How to Build an Earthquake-Resistant Bridge," 29 July 2010

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

See More

First Known Use of kilovolt

circa 1898, in the meaning defined above

History and Etymology for kilovolt

International Scientific Vocabulary

Keep scrolling for more

Learn More about kilovolt

Time Traveler for kilovolt

Time Traveler

The first known use of kilovolt was circa 1898

See more words from the same year

Statistics for kilovolt

Cite this Entry

“Kilovolt.” Dictionary, Merriam-Webster, Accessed 3 Mar. 2021.

Style: MLA
MLA Chicago APA Merriam-Webster

Keep scrolling for more

More Definitions for kilovolt


ki·​lo·​volt | \ -ˌvōlt How to pronounce kilovolt (audio) \

Medical Definition of kilovolt

: a unit of potential difference equal to 1000 volts

Comments on kilovolt

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


Test Your Vocabulary

February 2021 Words of the Day Quiz

  • squirrel in winter
  • Which is a synonym of perdure?
Name That Thing

Test your visual vocabulary with our 10-question challenge!

 AlphaBear 2

Spell words. Make bears.

Love words? Need even more definitions?

Subscribe to America's largest dictionary and get thousands more definitions and advanced search—ad free!