English Dictionary

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centrifugal (sɛnˈtrɪfjʊɡəl Pronunciation for centrifugal ; ˈsɛntrɪˌfjuːɡəl Pronunciation for centrifugal



  1. acting, moving, or tending to move away from a centre Compare centripetal
  2. of, concerned with, or operated by centrifugal force   ⇒ centrifugal pump
  3. (botany) (esp of certain inflorescences) developing outwards from a centre
  4. (physiology) another word for efferent


  1. any device that uses centrifugal force for its action
  2. the rotating perforated drum in a centrifuge

Derived Forms

cenˈtrifugally adverb

Word Origin

C18: from New Latin centrifugus, from centri- + Latin fugere to flee


View thesaurus entry
= radiating, diverging, divergent, radial, efferent, diffusive

Example Sentences Including 'centrifugal'

The centrifugal force almost threw them off the road as Janet took the roundabout at the top of The Hill too fast.
Peter Robinson AFTERMATH (2001)
They had to lean against centrifugal force as they rounded a hairpin.
Hilton, John Buxton Moondrop to Murder
`The moon revolves around the earth and the centrifugal force counteracts the force of gravity.
Ian St James Awards At the Stroke of Twelve


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