zirconium

noun

zir·​co·​ni·​um ˌzər-ˈkō-nē-əm How to pronounce zirconium (audio)
: a steel-gray hard ductile metallic element with a high melting point that occurs widely in combined form (as in zircon), is highly resistant to corrosion, and is used especially in alloys and in refractories and ceramics see Chemical Elements Table

Examples of zirconium in a Sentence

Recent Examples on the Web The investigators examined the X-ray spectra of zirconium minerals and found, in addition to the characteristic lines of the element, lines of another, unknown element in the position where the lines of No. 72 should be. Mark Fischetti, Scientific American, 1 Feb. 2024 In the accident, a zirconium plate in the reactor vessel became loose and blocked the sodium coolant, causing a small amount of fuel to melt. Kylie Martin, Detroit Free Press, 28 Mar. 2024 The zirconium tubing surrounding the fuel reacted with hot steam to produce hydrogen, which mixed with air and exploded, destroying the surrounding structures. Victor Gilinsky, Foreign Affairs, 21 Mar. 2011 When temperatures passed 1300 °C, the fuel rods’ protective zirconium cladding began to react with the steam inside the vessel, producing highly volatile hydrogen gas. IEEE Spectrum, 31 Oct. 2011 See all Example Sentences for zirconium 

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

Word History

Etymology

New Latin, from International Scientific Vocabulary zircon

First Known Use

1808, in the meaning defined above

Time Traveler
The first known use of zirconium was in 1808

Dictionary Entries Near zirconium

Cite this Entry

“Zirconium.” Merriam-Webster.com Dictionary, Merriam-Webster, https://www.merriam-webster.com/dictionary/zirconium. Accessed 14 Jul. 2024.

Kids Definition

zirconium

noun
zir·​co·​ni·​um ˌzər-ˈkō-nē-əm How to pronounce zirconium (audio)
: a steel-gray strong metallic element with a high melting point that is used especially in combination with other metals see element

Medical Definition

zirconium

noun
zir·​co·​ni·​um (ˌ)zər-ˈkō-nē-əm How to pronounce zirconium (audio)
: a steel-gray strong ductile chiefly tetravalent metallic element with a high melting point
symbol Zr
see Chemical Elements Table

More from Merriam-Webster on zirconium

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