nuclear

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English[edit]

Etymology[edit]

From Latin nū̆cleus, a contraction of the adjective nuculeus, masculine of feminine nuculea (pertaining to a small nut) from nucula + adjectival suffix -eus, -ea, -eum. The Latin nucula + -āris adds up to nuculāris, a term that in English becomes nucular; the Latin nuculea + -āris, becomes Latin nuculeāris (relative to what pertains to small nut), later contracted into nuclear. Compare muscle and Latin mūsculus; muscular and mūsculāris.

Pronunciation[edit]

  • (Canada) IPA(key): /ˈn(j)ukliɚ/
  • (file)
  • (UK) IPA(key): /ˈnjuː.klɪə/
  • (file)
  • (US) IPA(key): /ˈn(j)ukliɚ/, /ˈn(j)ukjəlɚ/ (see usage notes)
  • (file)

Adjective[edit]

nuclear (not comparable)

  1. Pertaining to the nucleus of an atom. [from 20th c.]
  2. Involving energy released by nuclear reactions (fission, fusion, radioactive decay). [from 20th c.]
    a nuclear reactor
    nuclear technology
  3. Relating to a weapon that derives its force from rapid release of energy through nuclear reactions. [from 20th c.]
    a nuclear explosion
  4. (by extension, metaphoric, of a solution or response) Involving an extreme course of action.
    nuclear option, nuclear solution
    • 2011, Todd Lipscomb, Re-Made in the USA, →ISBN:
      The states begging for aid get turned away; and sharp cuts in government employment, spending, and, eventually, pension payments are the only alternative future, beyond the nuclear solution of defaulting on our debt.
    • 2013, Erica Sadun, iOS Auto Layout Demystified, →ISBN, page 150:
      The nuclear approach is the simpler of the two. When two constraints conflict, you can kill one of them.
    • 2017 April 6, Mythili Sampathkumar, “Democrats filibuster forces Republicans to use 'nuclear option to confirm Trump's Supreme Court pick”, in The Independent:
      Republicans have taken the historic step of triggering the so-called "nuclear option" to change the rules of the Senate and push through Donald Trump's pick for the Supreme Court, after Democrats blocked the nomination.
  5. (biology) Pertaining to the nucleus of a cell. [from 19th c.]
    • 2011, Terence Allen and Graham Cowling, The Cell: A Very Short Introduction, Oxford, page 17:
      However, the DNA in a bacterial cell is a single circular molecule and there is no separate nuclear compartment.
  6. (archaic) Pertaining to a centre around which something is developed or organised; central, pivotal. [from 19th c.]

Usage notes[edit]

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Translations[edit]

Further reading[edit]

Noun[edit]

nuclear (uncountable)

  1. nuclear power
    • 2015, Vital Signs Volume 22: The Trends That Are Shaping Our Future, The Worldwatch Institute:
      The growth in wind capacity at first lagged behind the expansion of nuclear installations, but then it started to grow faster and is now outpacing nuclear.

Anagrams[edit]


Catalan[edit]

Pronunciation[edit]

Adjective[edit]

nuclear (masculine and feminine plural nuclears)

  1. nuclear

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Galician[edit]

Adjective[edit]

nuclear m or f (plural nucleares)

  1. nuclear

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Occitan[edit]

Adjective[edit]

nuclear m (feminine singular nucleara, masculine plural nuclears, feminine plural nuclearas)

  1. nuclear

Portuguese[edit]

Pronunciation[edit]

Adjective[edit]

nuclear m or f (plural nucleares, comparable)

  1. nuclear; central (to a centre around which something is developed or organised)
  2. (biology) nuclear (relating to the nucleus of cells)
  3. (physics) nuclear (relating to the nucleus of atoms)
  4. nuclear (involving atomic energy or weapons)

Derived terms[edit]

Related terms[edit]

Further reading[edit]

  • nuclear” in Dicionário Priberam da Língua Portuguesa.

Spanish[edit]

Etymology 1[edit]

nucleo +‎ -ar, ultimately from Latin nuculeus.

Pronunciation[edit]

Adjective[edit]

nuclear (plural nucleares)

  1. nuclear

Derived terms[edit]

Related terms[edit]

Etymology 2[edit]

EB1911 - Volume 01 - Page 001 - 1.svg This etymology is missing or incomplete. Please add to it, or discuss it at the Etymology scriptorium.
Particularly: “Latin nū̆cleō?”

Verb[edit]

nuclear (first-person singular present nucleo, first-person singular preterite nucleé, past participle nucleado)

  1. to join up; to unite
Conjugation[edit]

Further reading[edit]

  • nuclear” in Diccionario de la lengua española, Vigésima tercera edición, Real Academia Española, 2014.
  • Roberts, Edward A. (2014) A Comprehensive Etymological Dictionary of the Spanish Language with Families of Words based on Indo-European Roots, Xlibris Corporation, →ISBN

Anagrams[edit]