phosphorescence

noun

phos·​pho·​res·​cence ˌfäs-fə-ˈre-sᵊn(t)s How to pronounce phosphorescence (audio)
1
: luminescence that is caused by the absorption of radiations (such as light or electrons) and continues for a noticeable time after these radiations have stopped compare fluorescence
2
: an enduring luminescence without sensible heat

Examples of phosphorescence in a Sentence

Recent Examples on the Web The paintings are unnervingly picturesque: brilliant poppies against the violet-blue of a French afternoon, translucent ice floes glistening in the aquamarine waters of the Arctic, backlit palm trees in the eerie orange phosphorescence of a desert storm. Nicola Twilley, The New Yorker, 5 Oct. 2023 The vaporous mist of the morning dew is really the phosphorescence of toxic radiation. Jeff Weiss, Spin, 21 Aug. 2023 Sure enough, phosphorescence lights the way. Lauren Puckett-Pope, ELLE, 25 Feb. 2023 In general, phosphorescence signals are much longer-lasting than their fluorescent counterparts, allowing the Biofinder to distinguish between them. Allison Gasparini, Scientific American, 27 July 2022 Abiotic minerals also emit their own light, called phosphorescence. Allison Gasparini, Scientific American, 27 July 2022 Unlike sparkling dinoflagellates, bioluminescent bacteria produce a constant phosphorescence. Grrlscientist, Forbes, 11 July 2022 Last was the stadium wave and sparkling light rolled around Bryant-Denny like phosphorescence in a boat wake. Joseph Goodman | Jgoodman@al.com, al, 20 Nov. 2021 Luminescence in general can come from different sources—like the biochemical reaction that happens in fireflies, or the phosphorescence of the 2021 glowing plant. Caroline Delbert, Popular Mechanics, 11 Oct. 2021

These examples are programmatically compiled from various online sources to illustrate current usage of the word 'phosphorescence.' Any opinions expressed in the examples do not represent those of Merriam-Webster or its editors. Send us feedback about these examples.

Word History

First Known Use

1770, in the meaning defined at sense 2

Time Traveler
The first known use of phosphorescence was in 1770

Dictionary Entries Near phosphorescence

Cite this Entry

“Phosphorescence.” Merriam-Webster.com Dictionary, Merriam-Webster, https://www.merriam-webster.com/dictionary/phosphorescence. Accessed 26 May. 2024.

Kids Definition

phosphorescence

noun
phos·​pho·​res·​cence ˌfäs-fə-ˈres-ᵊn(t)s How to pronounce phosphorescence (audio)
1
: a light given off at low temperatures that is caused by the absorption of radiations (as X-rays or ultraviolet light) and continuing for a noticeable time after these radiations have stopped
2
: an enduring light given off with little heat

Medical Definition

phosphorescence

noun
phos·​pho·​res·​cence -ˈres-ᵊn(t)s How to pronounce phosphorescence (audio)
1
: luminescence that is caused by the absorption of radiation at one wavelength followed by delayed reradiation at a different wavelength and that continues for a noticeable time after the incident radiation stops
2
: an enduring luminescence without sensible heat

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