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Archaic Scientific Words & Definitions
RF Cafe Quiz #18

All RF Cafe quizzes would make perfect fodder for employment interviews for technicians or engineers - particularly those who are fresh out of school or are relatively new to the work world. Come to think of it, they would make equally excellent study material for the same persons who are going to be interviewed for a job.

Click here for the complete list of RF Cafe Quizzes.

Note: Many answers contain passages quoted in whole or in part from the text.


This particular quiz tests your knowledge of archaic scientific words & definitions. Choose the best answer for the spirit of the quiz; i.e., the one that represents the newer term or the abandoned definition.



1. Gutta percha

a) 16th century Indian physicist
b) Latin for "cat gut," used for stringed instruments
c) Cable insulation
d) Explosive compound



2. Condenser

a) Capacitor
b) Air pump
c) Mass compactor
d) Electrical probe



3. Luminiferous aether

a) Flame created by laboratory heaters
b) Medium that supports the transmission of
    light particles
c) The "light of the moon"
d) Glowing gas



4. Thermionic valve

a) Vacuum tube diode
b) Heat flow switch
c) Systolic pump
d) Lock



5. Dephlogisticated air

a) Dry (dehumidified) air
b) Perfect vacuum
c) Supersaturated air
d) Molecular oxygen



6. Corpuscle

a) Low-ranking enlisted man's bicep
b) Free radical
c) Electron
d) Light particle



7. Audion

a) Music aficionado
b) Sound generator
c) Vacuum tube triode
d) Sound level meter



8. Caloric

a) A stomach settling medical remedy
b) Unit of work
c) Unit of electrical resistance
d) Fluid responsible for heat flow



9. Leyden jar

a) Glass vacuum chamber
b) Energy storage device (capacitor)
c) Calibrated nudge
d) Test tube



10. Voltaic pile

a) Battery
b) Hemorrhoid
c) Large heap
d) Nuclear reactor


Need some help? Click here for the answers and explanations.

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