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Meaning of metastable

me•ta•sta•ble

Pronunciation: (met'u-stā"bul, met"u-stā'-), [key]
— adj.
  1. chemically unstable in the absence of certain conditions that would induce stability, but not liable to spontaneous transformation.
  2. pertaining to a body or system existing at an energy levelabove that of a more stable state and requiring the addition of a small amount of energy to induce a transition to the more stable state.
Random House Unabridged Dictionary, Copyright © 1997, by Random House, Inc., on Infoplease.
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