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Glossaries
[K-4] [5-8] [9-12]

9-12 Glossary

A B C D E F G H I J K L M N O P Q R S T U V W X Y Z

Glossary WordDefinition
ablation
  1. to remove, cut, or melt
  2. to remove by cutting, abrading, or evaporating
abnormal

not typical, usual, or regular; not normal

abort

to cancel an attempt. The Space Shuttle has several abort options, including an emergency return to the launch site to an "abort to orbit" (see ATO)

absolute zero

The theoretical temperature at which substances possess no thermal energy, equal to -273.15° Celsius, or -459.67° Fahrenheit

accentuate

accent, emphasize, or to intensify

acclimated

to become accustomed to a new environment or situation; adapt

acoustic

of or relating to sound, the sense of hearing, or the science of sound

acquisition

the act of locating something with a tracking device

acronym
  1. a word (as NASA or BLT) formed from the initial letter or letters of each of the successive parts or major parts of a compound term
  2. a word formed from the initial letters of a name, such as WAC for Women's Army Corps, or by combining initial letters or parts of a series of words, such as radar for radio detecting and ranging
actuator

one that activates, especially a device responsible for actuating a mechanical device, such as one connected to a computer by a sensor link

Advanced Health Monitoring System (AHMS)

a high-tech optical and vibration sensor system and computing power in the engines that will "see" trouble coming a fraction of a second before it can do harm. The sensors will detect and track an almost microscopic flaw in an engine's performance in a split second, allowing the engine to be safely shut down before the situation grows out of control.

aerobatic

spectacular stunts, such as rolls and loops, performed in an airplane or glider

aerodynamic

designed with rounded edges so as to reduce wind drag and thereby increase fuel efficiency

aerodynamics

a branch of dynamics that deals with the motion of air and other gaseous fluids and with the forces acting on bodies in motion relative to such fluids

aeroelastic

distortion as from bending or flexing in a structure (as an airplane wing or a building) caused by aerodynamic forces

aerogel

a highly porous solid formed from a gel, such as silica gel, in which the liquid is replaced with a gas

aeronautics

the design and construction of aircraft; the theory and practice of navigation through air or space

aerospike

a rocket engine that has no expansion bell but uses its own gas flow and outside atmospheric pressure to produce a spike-like flow of exhaust gas

aesthetically

responsive to or appreciative of what is pleasurable to the senses

aileron

either of two movable flaps on the wings of an airplane that can be used to control the plane's rolling and banking movements

airway

a designated route followed by airplanes in flying from one airport to another

algorithm
  1. a procedure for solving a mathematical problem (as of finding the greatest common divisor) in a finite number of steps that frequently involves repetition of an operation
  2. a step-by-step problem-solving procedure, especially an established, recursive computational procedure for solving a problem in a finite number of steps
alloy
  1. a substance composed of two or more metals or of a metal and a nonmetal intimately united usually by being fused together and dissolving in each other when molten
  2. a homogeneous mixture of two or more metals. Brass is an alloy of zinc and copper.
alteration

the act of making something different, the act of transforming

altus cumulus

cloud formation of rounded, fleecy, white or gray masses

ambient

surrounding; completely enveloping

amenity

something that contributes to physical or material comfort

AMLCD

Active-matrix liquid crystal display

analog

of, relating to, or being a device in which data are represented by continuously variable, measurable, physical quantities, such as length, width, voltage, or pressure

anemia

blood deficiency: a blood condition in which there are too few red blood cells or the red blood cells are deficient in hemoglobin, resulting in poor health

aneurysm

a sac-like widening of a blood vessel, especially an artery resulting from disease of the vessel wall

angioplasty

the surgical repair of a blood vessel, either by inserting a balloon-tipped catheter to unblock it, or by reconstructing or replacing part of the vessel

anomaly

deviation from the common rule, irregular

anti-communist

opposing or hostile to in opinion, sympathy, or practice to members of a Communist party or movement

antimatter

material that is identical to physical matter except that its atoms are composed of antielectrons (an electron with a positive charge), antiprotons (a proton with negative charge), and antineutrons (a neutron with differing magnetic properties)

aorta

largest artery in the body which has its origin at the heart. It branches off to the extremities, neck, and major organs for the purpose of supplying oxygenated blood.

aperture
  1. the opening in a photographic lens that admits the light
  2. an adjustable opening in an optical instrument, such as a camera or telescope, that limits the amount of light passing through a lens or onto a mirror
apogee

the farthest point from the Earth

aqueous humor

a transparent fluid occupying the space between the lens and the cornea of the eye

arc
  1. a continuous portion (as of a circle or ellipse) of a curved line
  2. formed by an electrical current in a broken or disconnected circuit
archaeology

the systematic study of past human life and culture by the recovery and examination of remaining material evidence

arduous

demanding great effort or labor, difficult

Armstrong's Line

an attitude of approximately 62,000 feet [18.9 km] at this altitude air comes out of solution and for a person the blood will begin to boil

ascomycete

any fungus of the class Ascomycetes (or subdivision Ascomycota) in which the spores are formed inside an ascus

ascospore

a sexually produced fungal spore formed within an ascus

ascus

a small membranous bladder or tube in which are inclosed the seedlike reproductive particles of lichens and certain fungi

assay

examination and determination as to characteristics such as weight, measure, or quality

astigmatism

a visual defect in which the unequal curvature of one or more refractive surfaces of the eye, usually the cornea, prevents light rays from focusing clearly at one point on the retina, resulting in blurred vision

astronomer

 

 

astrophysics

the physics of stars and nebulae

ATO

abort to orbit. A condition in which a failure, such as a premature engine shutdown, means the Shuttle won't be able to reach its planned orbit, but can reach a different safe orbit where operations might be continued

atrophy

a wasting away or decrease in size of a body organ, tissue, or part due to disease, injury, or lack of use

audacity

fearless daring, bold

autogenic

produced independently of external influence or aid

autoimmune

relating to, or caused by autoantibodies or lymphocytes that attack molecules, cells, or tissues of the organism producing them

automated

to control or operate by automation

autonomic

a part of the vertebrate nervous system that innervates smooth and cardiac muscle and glandular tissues and governs involuntary actions

autonomous

undertaken or carried on without outside control

autosomal

a chromosome that is not a sex chromosome

auxiliary

giving assistance or support; helping

aviation

the operation of heavier-than-air aircraft

avionics

electronics designed for use in aerospace vehicles



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