perturbation

noun
per·​tur·​ba·​tion | \ ˌpər-tər-ˈbā-shən How to pronounce perturbation (audio) , ˌpər-ˌtər- \

Definition of perturbation

1 : the action of perturbing : the state of being perturbed
2 : a disturbance of motion, course, arrangement, or state of equilibrium especially : a disturbance of the regular and usually elliptical course of motion of a celestial body that is produced by some force additional to that which causes its regular motion

Other Words from perturbation

perturbational \ ˌpər-​tər-​ˈbā-​shnəl How to pronounce perturbation (audio) , -​shə-​nᵊl , ˌpər-​ˌtər-​ \ adjective

Examples of perturbation in a Sentence

a perturbation in the planet's orbit in her perturbation she kept calling her son, a freshman, to see if everything was all right at college
Recent Examples on the Web The mechanisms of this polar perturbation are not yet fully understood. Robin Andrews, Wired, 22 Feb. 2022 In Florida, for instance, it could be detected as a perturbation in air pressures shortly after 9 a.m. Washington Post, 15 Jan. 2022 What O’Hara gets so right, regardless of the apparent setting, is the relentless rhythm of placation and perturbation. New York Times, 25 Jan. 2022 One prominent candidate for a brain signature of consciousness is its response to a perturbation. Anil Seth, Wired, 20 Dec. 2021 For capable athletes, imagination is the only factor that limits perturbation training. Washington Post, 6 July 2021 This procedure, known as perturbation theory, gets them correlation functions for most of the fields in the standard model, because nature’s forces happen to be quite feeble. Charlie Wood, Wired, 4 July 2021 The merger produces bursts of energy like gravitational waves that move through space and time — a perturbation that has been measured by detectors on Earth from the Laser Interferometer Gravitational-Wave Observatory, known as LIGO. Wilson Wong, NBC News, 29 June 2021 This procedure, known as perturbation theory, gets them correlation functions for most of the fields in the Standard Model, because nature’s forces happen to be quite feeble. Quanta Magazine, 17 June 2021 See More

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

First Known Use of perturbation

14th century, in the meaning defined at sense 1

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Time Traveler for perturbation

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The first known use of perturbation was in the 14th century

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Dictionary Entries Near perturbation

perturbate

perturbation

perturbation theory

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Last Updated

9 Apr 2022

Cite this Entry

“Perturbation.” Merriam-Webster.com Dictionary, Merriam-Webster, https://www.merriam-webster.com/dictionary/perturbation. Accessed 21 May. 2022.

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More from Merriam-Webster on perturbation

Britannica English: Translation of perturbation for Arabic Speakers

Britannica.com: Encyclopedia article about perturbation

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