equation | medical dictionary |

1. A making equal; equal division; equality; equilibrium. "Again the golden day resumed its right, And ruled in just equation with the night." (Rowe)

2. <mathematics> An expression of the condition of equality between two algebraic quantities or sets of quantities, the sign = being placed between them; as, a binomial equation; a quadratic equation; an algebraic equation; a transcendental equation; an exponential equation; a logarithmic equation; a differential equation, etc.

3. <astronomy> A quantity to be applied in computing the mean place or other element of a celestial body; that is, any one of the several quantities to be added to, or taken from, its position as calculated on the hypothesis of a mean uniform motion, in order to find its true position as resulting from its actual and unequal motion.

4. Equation box, or Equational box, a system of differential gearing used in spinning machines for regulating the twist of the yarn. It resembles gearing used in equation clocks for showing apparent time.

5. <astronomy> Equation of the center, the difference between the place of a planet as supposed to move uniformly in a circle, and its place as moving in an ellipse.

Origin: L. Aequatio an equalizing: cf. F. Equation equation. See Equate.

(01 Mar 1998)

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