A device that monitors temperature and automatically maintains it at certain levels. In a human, a tiny part of the brain called the hypothalamus, located behind the eyes, serves as the thermostat. It can warm the body by causing it to shiver and cool the body by causing it to perspire. The hypothalamus also regulates hunger, thirst, sex drive and other body activities. "Thermostat" is derived from the Greek "therme" (heat) and "statos" (standing, stationary). Other words formed from "therme" include "thermometer" (a device for measuring temperature) and "thermotherapy" (the use of heat to treat disease).
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An apparatus for the automatic regulation of heat, as in an incubator. SYN: thermoregulator. [thermo- + G. statos, standing]

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ther·mo·stat 'thər-mə-.stat n
1) an automatic device for regulating temperature (as by controlling the supply of gas or electricity to a heating apparatus)
2) a piece of apparatus (as a constant-temperature chamber) regulated by a thermostat
ther·mo·stat·ic .thər-mə-'stat-ik adj
ther·mo·stat·i·cal·ly -i-k(ə-)lē adv
thermostat vt, -stat·ed -.stat-əd or -stat·ted; -stat·ing or -stat·ting to provide with or control the temperature of by a thermostat <a thermostated centrifuge>

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ther·mo·stat (thurґmo-stat) [thermo- + -stat] a device interposed in a heating system by which the temperature can be automatically maintained between certain levels.

Medical dictionary. 2011.

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Look at other dictionaries:

  • thermostat — [ tɛrmɔsta ] n. m. • 1890; autre sens 1842; de thermo et du rad. gr. de istanai « fixer » ♦ Appareil ou dispositif qui permet d obtenir une température constante dans une enceinte fermée. Thermostat électrique. Four à thermostat. Régler le… …   Encyclopédie Universelle

  • Thermostat — Sm per. Wortschatz fach. (19. Jh.) Neoklassische Bildung. Neubildung zu gr. thermós warm und gr. statós stehend, feststehend . So benannt als ein Gerät, das die Temperatur auf einer bestimmten Höhe hält.    Ebenso nndl. thermostaat, ne.… …   Etymologisches Wörterbuch der deutschen sprache

  • Thermostat — Ther mo*stat, n. [Thermo + Gr. ? to make to stand.] (Physics) A device which automatically regulates temperature, or provides a signal used by another device to regulate temperature. The temperature sensitive signal may be electronic, as that… …   The Collaborative International Dictionary of English

  • Thermostāt — (griech., Thermoregulator), Gestell zum bequemen Erhitzen eines Körpers über der Lampe, speziell eine Vorrichtung zur Einhaltung einer bestimmten Temperatur. Erreicht die Quecksilbersäule in einem thermometerartigen Gefäß eine bestimmte Höhe, die …   Meyers Großes Konversations-Lexikon

  • Thermostat — Thermostāt (grch.), Vorrichtung, um Temperaturen längere Zeit unverändert zu erhalten …   Kleines Konversations-Lexikon

  • thermostat — 1831, from THERMO (Cf. thermo ) + STAT (Cf. stat) …   Etymology dictionary

  • thermostat — ► NOUN ▪ a device that automatically regulates temperature or activates a device at a set temperature. DERIVATIVES thermostatic adjective thermostatically adverb …   English terms dictionary

  • thermostat — [thʉr′mə stat΄] n. [ THERMO + STAT] 1. an apparatus for regulating temperature, esp. one that automatically controls a heating or cooling unit 2. a device that sets off equipment at a certain temperature, as a fire alarm system thermostatic adj.… …   English World dictionary

  • Thermostat — This article is about the temperature regulating device. For the French cooking oven temperature scale, see Gas Mark#Other cooking temperature scales. Honeywell s iconic The Round model T87 thermostat, one of which is in the Smithsonian …   Wikipedia

  • Thermostat — …   Wikipédia en Français

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