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Meaning of regulator

reg•u•la•tor

Pronunciation: (reg'yu-lā"tur), [key]
— n.
  1. a person or thing that regulates.
    1. an adjustable device in a clock or a watch for making it go faster or slower.
    2. a master clock, usually of great accuracy, against which other clocks are checked.
    1. a governor mechanism for regulating the flow of fuel, steam, etc., to an engine in order to maintain constant speed under varying load or resistance.
    2. a valve for regulating the pressure of flowing gas or liquid to maintain a predetermined pressure.
    3. any of various mechanisms for maintaining a temperature, a level of liquid in a tank, etc.
  2. a device for maintaining a designated characteristic, as voltage or current, at a predetermined value, or for varying it according to a predetermined plan.
  3. a device on scuba equipment for regulating the rate at which compressed air is fed through a breathing tube in proportion to the depth of water.
  4. a device for maintaining a constant gas pressure.
  5. (cap.)
    1. a member of any of several bands or committees in North Carolina (1767–71), formed to resist certain abuses, as extortion by officials.
    2. (in newly settled areas) a member of any band or committee organized to preserve order before the establishment of regular legal authority.
Random House Unabridged Dictionary, Copyright © 1997, by Random House, Inc., on Infoplease.
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