cascade


cascade

noun

  1. a waterfall descending over a steep, rocky surface.
  2. a series of shallow or steplike waterfalls, either natural or artificial.
  3. anything that resembles a waterfall, especially in seeming to flow or fall in abundance: a cascade of roses covering the wall.
  4. (in a drain or sewer) a chain of steps for dissipating the momentum of falling water in a steep place in order to maintain a steady rate of flow.
  5. an arrangement of a lightweight fabric in folds falling one over another in random or zigzag fashion.
  6. a type of firework resembling a waterfall in effect.
  7. Chemistry. a series of vessels, from each of which a fluid successively overflows to the next, thus presenting a large absorbing surface, as to a gas.
  8. Electricity. an arrangement of component devices, as electrolytic cells, each of which feeds into the next in succession.
  9. Biochemistry. a series of reactions catalyzed by enzymes that are activated sequentially by successive products of the reactions, resulting in an amplification of the initial response.

verb (used without object), cas·cad·ed, cas·cad·ing.

  1. to fall in or like a cascade.

verb (used with object), cas·cad·ed, cas·cad·ing.

  1. to cause to fall in a cascade.
  2. Electricity. to arrange (components) in a cascade.

noun

  1. a waterfall or series of waterfalls over rocks
  2. something resembling this, such as folds of lace
    1. a consecutive sequence of chemical or physical processes
    2. (as modifier)cascade liquefaction
    1. a series of stages in the processing chain of an electrical signal where each operates the next in turn
    2. (as modifier)a cascade amplifier
  3. the cumulative process responsible for the formation of an electrical discharge, cosmic-ray shower, or Geiger counter avalanche in a gas
  4. the sequence of spontaneous decays by an excited atom or ion

verb

  1. (intr) to flow or fall in or like a cascade
n.

1640s, from French cascade (17c.), from Italian cascata “waterfall,” from cascare “to fall,” from Vulgar Latin *casicare, frequentative of Latin casum, casus, past participle of cadere “to fall” (see case (n.1)).

v.

1702, from cascade (n.). In early 19c. slang, “to vomit.” Related: Cascaded; cascading.

n.

  1. A succession of actions, processes, or operations, as of a physiological process.

  1. A series of chemical or physiological processes that occur in successive stages, each of which is dependent on the preceding one, to produce a culminating effect. The steps involved in the clotting of blood occur as a cascade.

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