transistor

noun

tran·​sis·​tor tran-ˈzi-stər How to pronounce transistor (audio)
tran(t)-ˈsi-
1
: a solid-state electronic device that is used to control the flow of electricity in electronic equipment and usually consists of a small block of a semiconductor (such as germanium) with at least three electrodes
2
: a transistorized radio

Examples of transistor in a Sentence

Recent Examples on the Web In a major strategy shift, GlobalFoundries in 2018 decided to stop the costly practice of developing new production processes that pack more transistors on each piece of silicon. Don Clark, New York Times, 19 Feb. 2024 The ultimate goal is a commercially available aluminum nitride power transistor that is greatly superior to the existing options, and the Nagoya work has left little doubt that’s eventually going to happen. IEEE Spectrum, 30 Jan. 2024 In semiconductors, the nanometer measure refers to the distance between transistors on the chip, meaning there can be more transistors, and more densely designed, on a smaller nanometer chip. Corina Vanek, The Arizona Republic, 19 Jan. 2024 The chips contained billions of electronic transistors, which routed electricity through labyrinthine circuits to complete calculations at extraordinary speed. Stephen Witt, The New Yorker, 27 Nov. 2023 So the material is able to withstand very intense electric fields before the bonds break and the transistor is destroyed. IEEE Spectrum, 30 Jan. 2024 Preview Subscribe Hardware designed for specific, specialized applications will be the way to improve chip performance as transistors reach their physical limits, some experts say. Belle Lin, WSJ, 14 Dec. 2023 As Tetris players do with falling blocks, Prabhu will sometimes see transistors in his sleep. Stephen Witt, The New Yorker, 27 Nov. 2023 Bell Labs created the transistor, and Fairchild Semiconductor created the integrated circuit, but neither company is still around. Andy Patrizio, Ars Technica, 6 Oct. 2023 See More

These examples are programmatically compiled from various online sources to illustrate current usage of the word 'transistor.' 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

1948, in the meaning defined at sense 1

Time Traveler
The first known use of transistor was in 1948

Dictionary Entries Near transistor

Cite this Entry

“Transistor.” Merriam-Webster.com Dictionary, Merriam-Webster, https://www.merriam-webster.com/dictionary/transistor. Accessed 27 Feb. 2024.

Kids Definition

transistor

noun
tran·​sis·​tor tranz-ˈis-tər How to pronounce transistor (audio)
tran(t)s-
1
: an electronic device that consists of a small block of a semiconductor (as germanium) with at least three electrodes and is used to control the flow of electricity in electronic equipment (as a radio or computer)
2
: a radio having transistors

called also transistor radio

Medical Definition

transistor

noun
tran·​sis·​tor tranz-ˈis-tər, tran(t)s- How to pronounce transistor (audio)
: a solid-state electronic device that is used to control the flow of electricity in electronic equipment and consists of a small block of a semiconductor (as germanium) with at least three electrodes

More from Merriam-Webster on transistor

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