static electricity

noun

Definition of static electricity 

: electricity that consists of isolated motionless charges (such as those produced by friction)

Examples of static electricity in a Sentence

In dry weather, static electricity can cause clothes to cling.

Recent Examples on the Web

Scientists have also sought to use the same effect behind everyday static electricity to power devices. Charles Q. Choi, Washington Post, "How the body could power pacemakers and other implantable devices," 9 June 2018 Scientists have also sought to use the same effect behind everyday static electricity to power devices. Charles Q. Choi, Washington Post, "How the body could power pacemakers and other implantable devices," 9 June 2018 Scientists have also sought to use the same effect behind everyday static electricity to power devices. Charles Q. Choi, Washington Post, "How the body could power pacemakers and other implantable devices," 9 June 2018 In the dry desert environment, wind moving over dirt and sand particles can be enough to build up a cache of static electricity. Kevin Dupzyk, Popular Mechanics, "5 Realities of Fighting Fire in the Middle of Nowhere," 20 June 2016 Benjamin Franklin’s famous wet-kite experiment demonstrated that ordinary static electricity was the same stuff as lightning by capturing its charges in Leyden jars, primitive batteries. Charles R. Morris, WSJ, "‘Energy’ Review: The Path to Power," 21 June 2018 Buildings were burned after being struck by lightning from static electricity in the ash cloud, which reached the stratosphere. Michelle Theriault Boots, Anchorage Daily News, "Alaska is no stranger to volcanoes erupting. But what would happen in a big one?," 28 May 2018 Scientists have also sought to use the same effect behind everyday static electricity to power devices. Charles Q. Choi, The Atlantic, "Your Heartbeat Could Power a Smartphone," 12 Apr. 2018 At 53, Klinsmann remains enthusiastic, fit, tan and blond, a rogue tuft of hair stubbornly rising from the top of his head as if pulled by an invisible cloud of static electricity. Chris Ballard, SI.com, "The Reflection, Future and Duality of Post-USMNT Jurgen Klinsmann," 16 May 2018

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

1838, in the meaning defined above

Keep scrolling for more

Learn More about static electricity

Share static electricity

Statistics for static electricity

Last Updated

3 Oct 2018

Look-up Popularity

Time Traveler for static electricity

The first known use of static electricity was in 1838

See more words from the same year

Keep scrolling for more

More Definitions for static electricity

static electricity

noun

English Language Learners Definition of static electricity

: electricity that collects on the surface of something and does not flow as a current and can cause a mild shock if you touch it

More from Merriam-Webster on static electricity

Britannica.com: Encyclopedia article about static electricity

Comments on static electricity

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

WORD OF THE DAY

exaggeratedly or childishly emotional

Get Word of the Day daily email!

Test Your Vocabulary

Words from Greek and Roman Mythology Quiz

  • the-triumph-of-venus-by-alessandro-magnasco
  • Boreal comes from the name of the ancient Greek god of which wind?
How Strong Is Your Vocabulary?

Test your vocabulary with our 10-question quiz!

TAKE THE QUIZ
Word Winder's CrossWinder

Test Your Knowledge - and learn some interesting things along the way.

TAKE THE QUIZ

Love words? Need even more definitions?

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