red·​shift | \ ˈred-ˈshift How to pronounce redshift (audio) \

Definition of redshift

: a displacement of the spectrum of a celestial body toward longer wavelengths that is a consequence of the Doppler effect or the gravitational field of the source also : a measurement of a celestial body's redshift equal to the ratio of the displacement of a spectral line to its known unshifted wavelength and used especially to calculate the body's distance from earth

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Other Words from redshift

redshifted \ ˈred-​ˈshif-​təd How to pronounce redshift (audio) \ adjective

Examples of redshift in a Sentence

Recent Examples on the Web If space expanded at a constant rate, a supernova’s redshift would be directly proportional to its distance, and thus to its brightness. Quanta Magazine, "No Dark Energy? No Chance, Cosmologists Contend," 17 Dec. 2019 The greater the redshift, the farther away the object. Anil Ananthaswamy, Scientific American, "How Heavy is the Universe? Conflicting Answers Hint at New Physics," 12 May 2020 That was first confirmed with the measurement of a redshift in the starlight of a white dwarf star in 1954. Jennifer Ouellette, Ars Technica, "Einstein wins again: Star orbits black hole just like GR predicts," 16 Apr. 2020 Indeed, researchers find that the redshift and brightness of supernovas scales in just this way. Quanta Magazine, "No Dark Energy? No Chance, Cosmologists Contend," 17 Dec. 2019 Some of the most distant objects astronomers study can only be seen in infrared due to a phenomenon called redshift. Lily Katzman, Smithsonian Magazine, "Spitzer’s 16 Years of Scanning the Cosmos," 31 Jan. 2020 At this time, the redshift effect is particularly notable as the gravitational pull of Sagittarius A* grows stronger when the star moves closer. Emily Toomey, Smithsonian, "A Star Orbiting in the Extreme Gravity of a Black Hole Validates General Relativity," 25 July 2019 This wavelength increase, known as a redshift, is associated on a stellar level with age. David Grossman, Popular Mechanics, "This Supercomputer Is Out Here Just Generating Millions of Universes," 13 Aug. 2019 To get a distance to a galaxy, astronomers split its light into a spectrum and measure its redshift, or the stretching of its light by the expansion of the universe. Daniel Clery, Science | AAAS, "Robot detector to map cosmos for clues to dark energy," 11 Sep. 2019

These example sentences are selected automatically from various online news sources to reflect current usage of the word 'redshift.' 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 redshift

1923, in the meaning defined above

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The first known use of redshift was in 1923

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Cite this Entry

“Redshift.” Dictionary, Merriam-Webster, Accessed 16 May. 2021.

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