metastable

adjective
meta·sta·ble | \-ˈstā-bəl \

Definition of metastable 

: having or characterized by only a slight margin of stability a metastable compound

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Other Words from metastable

metastability \-stə-ˈbi-lə-tē \ noun
metastably \-ˈstā-b(ə-)lē \ adverb

Examples of metastable in a Sentence

Recent Examples on the Web

In 2000, astronomers predicted that metastable helium should show up in certain planetary atmospheres, but a search for it—reported in 2003,—on the planet HD 209458b, came up empty. Alexandra Witze, Scientific American, "Astronomers Spot Helium on Exoplanet for First Time," 4 May 2018 Guth wondered what would have happened if such a metastable phase transition occurred in the early universe. Adam Davidson, The New Yorker, "The End of the Universe as We Know It," 23 Mar. 2017

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

First Known Use of metastable

1897, in the meaning defined above

History and Etymology for metastable

International Scientific Vocabulary

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Time Traveler for metastable

The first known use of metastable was in 1897

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More Definitions for metastable

metastable

adjective
meta·sta·ble | \ˌmet-ə-ˈstā-bəl \

Medical Definition of metastable 

: having or characterized by only a slight margin of stability a metastable compound

Other Words from metastable

metastability \-stə-ˈbil-ət-ē \ noun plural -ties

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