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Definition of "brownout" [brown•out]

  • A reduction or cutback in electric power, especially as a result of a shortage, a mechanical failure, or overuse by consumers. (noun)

American Heritage(R) Dictionary of the English Language, Fifth Edition. Copyright (c) 2011 by Houghton Mifflin Harcourt Publishing Company. Published by Houghton Mifflin Harcourt Publishing Company. All rights reserved.

Use "brownout" in a sentence
  • "Earlier on the day of the crash, the Sikorsky attempted to land in another spot, but dust churned up by its rotors caused a "brownout" - a condition in which visibility is limited by dust or sand - and forced the helicopter to circle around before attempting another landing."
  • "Both of those helicopters experiencing what are called brownout conditions, meaning the pilots couldn't see the ground because of all the dust flying in the air as they landed."
  • "The helicopters landing in what are called brownout conditions, meaning the dust on the desert floor rises up and engulfs the helicopter."