from the GNU version of the Collaborative International Dictionary of English

  • adj. Without any power (cf. watt); -- said of an alternating current or component of current when it differs in phase by ninety degrees from the electromotive force which produces it, or of an electromotive force or component thereof when the current it produces differs from it in phase by 90 degrees.

from The Century Dictionary and Cyclopedia

  • In electricity, consuming no power. A wattless alternating current is a current differing in phase by 90 degrees from the electromotive force; a wattless electromotive force is an electromotive force differing in phase by 90 degrees from the current. A better term is reactive.


Sorry, no etymologies found.


  • Now, the wattless power required for the switching can - after having been released by the coil of the series reactor - be stored in the capacitor to a great extent.

    12. Answers to the Questions for Repetition and Knowledge Tests

  • To overcome this problem, and at the same time to ensure that generators and cables are not overloaded with wattless current (as this excess current is termed), the supply authorities often offer reduced terms to consumers whose power factor is high, or impose penalties on those with low power factor.

    Chapter 7


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