from the GNU version of the Collaborative International Dictionary of English.

  • noun a unit of energy, being equal to the kinetic energy acquired by an electron when accelerated through a potential difference of one volt. It is equal to 1.602 x 10-19 Joules. It is abbreviated eV.

from WordNet 3.0 Copyright 2006 by Princeton University. All rights reserved.

  • noun a unit of energy equal to the work done by an electron accelerated through a potential difference of 1 volt


Sorry, no etymologies found.


  • Neutrinos have _very small_ masses (probably a few hundredths of an electron-volt), they usually travel at nearly (but not quite) the speed of light, and they rarely interact with anything.

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  • LHC successfully reached its goal of a 7 TeV energy level -- two beams of protons each at 3.5 trillion electron-volt energies whizzed in opposite directions and eventually collided at several points in the gigantic underground ring-shaped particle accelerator.

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  • Develop 0.5 MeV [mega electron-volt] proton beams and collide onto microscale B-11 target with a fusion Q (energy ratio) > 20, possibly leading to self-sustained fusion.

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  • Someone can please correct me on this if I am in error, but here's what I come up with: a volt is defined as the difference in electric potential that is required to impart to 1 coulomb of electricity a kinetic energy of 1 joule = 1 newton-meter = 1 kilogram-meter/second/second = 1 watt-second, and since there are 6.24 x 10 to the 18th power electrons in a coulomb (according to Wikipedia, of course), this means that 1 electron-volt = 1/(6.24E18) = 1.60 times 10 to the minus 19th power watt-second.

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