Longman Dictionary of Contemporary English homepage

Topic: PHYSICS

Date: 1800-1900
Language: Latin
Origin: 'something that appears, image', from specere 'to look (at)'

spectrum

noun
     
spec‧trum plural spectra [countable]
1 a complete range of opinions, people, situations etc, going from one extreme to its opposite
spectrum of
the ethnic spectrum of America
across the spectrum
The bill drew support from across the political spectrum.
broad/wide/full etc spectrum
a broad spectrum of environmental groups
The two articles here represent opposite ends of the spectrum.
2HP the set of bands of coloured light into which a beam of light separates when it is passed through a prism
3HPTC a complete range of radio, sound etc waves:
the electromagnetic spectrum
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