Fr.: petit axe
The axis of an ellipse that is perpendicular to the major axis at a point equidistant from the foci.
Fr.: fusion mineure
The → merging in which one of the galaxies is significantly larger than the other (mass ratios above 10). The larger galaxy will often "swallow" the smaller satellite galaxy. The swallowed galaxy can trigger disk and nuclear star formation or activate a central core with shells that surround the predator.
Fr.: petite planète
An obsolete name used to describe an → asteroid.
Fr.: prémisse mineur
Fr.: terme mineur
For a function f defined on the interval I, the point m such that for each x on I, f(x)≥ m. See also → majorant.
From Fr. minorant, from minorer "to reduce, cut," from L. → minor.
Kehân, from kehidan, from keh "small, little," → minor.
The smaller number, part, or quantity of a whole.
Mintaka (δ Orionis)
The faintest and the westernmost of the three stars which appear in a row and make up the → Orion's Belt. It is a blue star of magnitude 2.23 lying 915 light-years away. Mintaka is in fact an → eclipsing binary with a period of 5.7 days. The main star has a → spectral type of O9.5 and radiates near 90,000 times the → solar luminosity. Mintaka is remarkable as regards the discovery of the → interstellar medium. The ISM was discovered by the German astronomer Johannes Hartmann (1855-1936) through the study of δ Orionis. He remarked that the calcium line at 3934 Å did not share in the periodic displacements of the lines caused by the orbital motion of the star. This suggested that the calcium line was not from the stars but from an intervening interstellar absorbing cloud.
Mintaka, from al-Mintaqah "the belt," from al-Mintaqah al-Jauzâ'
1) (prep.) With the deduction of.
L. minus "less," neuter of minor "smaller," ultimately from PIE *mi-nu-, suffixed form of root *mei- "small;" cf. L. minuere "to diminish, lessen;" Gk. meion "less, smaller;" Av. (+ prefix *ui-) vīmītô.dantānô "with lost teeth;" O.Pers. mīθah- "damage, harm;" Mid.Pers. (+ *ui-) wmys- "to fade;" Mod.Pers. gum, gom "lost;" Ossetian minæg "weak, dim (light)" (Cheung 2007); Skt. miyate "diminishes," Russ. men'she "less;" O.E. minsian "to diminish."
Kaman, from kam "little, few; deficient, wanting; scarce," from Mid.Pers. kam "little, small, few," O.Pers./Av. kamna- "small, few" + suffix -an that occurs in many words, such as rowšan, rowzan "bright, window," anjoman "assembly, association," hâvan "mortar," mihan "homeland, dwelling," barzan "district, neighborhood," rasan "rope." These particular cases are related to Proto-Ir./Av. -ana: raocana-, hanjamana-, hāvana-, maeθana-, *varezana-, and *uraisana- respectively; other cases may have a different origin, e.g. Proto-Ir. *-an.
A unit of angular measurement equal to one sixtieth of a degree.
From O.Fr. minut, from M.L. minuta "minute, short note," from L. minuta, feminin of minutus "small, minute." In M.L., pars minuta prima "first small part" was used by Ptolemy for "one-sixtieth of a circle," later of an hour (next in order was secunda minuta, which became second).
Daqiqé, loan from Ar. daqiqat.
A → red giant → variable star in the constellation → Cetus, called also Omicron (ο) Ceti. Its → visual magnitude varies between 2.0 and 10.1 over a period of about 330 days, and its → spectral type between M5 and M9. Its diameter is 400-500 times that of the Sun, and it lies approximately 420 → light-years away. Mira is a → binary star, consisting of the red giant Mira A along with Mira B. It is the prototype of a class known as → long-period variables, or → Mira variables.
From L. mira "wonderful," as named by J. Hevelius (1611-1687).
Fr.: variables de type Mira
A variant of → Merak.
Fr.: fantôme de Mirach
Same as → NGC 404.
An optical phenomenon caused by → refraction of light in the lowest layers of the Earth's → atmosphere especially in the → desert, over a hot pavement, or at → sea. Due to temperature variations, the air → density varies, leading to a spatial variation of the → index of refraction of → air. As a result, light from a single point takes more than one path to the observer and the → image of some distant object appears displaced from its true position; the image may appear distorted, inverted, or wavering.
From Fr. mirage, from (se) mir(er) "to look at (oneself), be reflected" (from L. mirare "to wonder at, admire") + suffix -age.
Sarâb "mirage," literally "water point, water origin, water head," probably from sar "origin, beginning," → head, + âb, → water. The similarity with Ar. serab (cf. Hebrew sharab "burning heat, parched ground") may be fortuitous.
The eleventh of Uranus's known satellites and the innermost of Uranus' large moons. Its is about 470 km in diameter and orbits Uranus at about 130,000 km from its planet. It was discovered by Kuiper in 1948.
Miranda is a daughter of the magician Prospero in Shakespeare's The Tempest.
Mirfak (α Persei)
The brightest star of Perseus, with a visual magnitude of 1.8. It is a giant of spectral type F5 lying some 590 light-years away.
From Ar. al-Mirfaq (
Merfaq, from Ar. al-Mirfaq, as above.
A smooth, highly polished surface, for reflecting light, that may be plane or curved. The actual reflecting surface is usually a thin coating of silver or aluminum on glass.
From O.Fr. mireor "a reflecting glass," earlier miradoir, from mirer "look at," from V.L. *mirare, from L. mirari "to wonder at, admire."
Âyené, from Mid.Pers. êwênag "mirror," from *âdênak, from Proto-Iranian *ādayanaka-, from prefix ā- + the root of Av. dā(y)- "to see," didāti "sees" (cf. Mod.Pers. didan "to see," Mid.Pers. ditan "to see, regard, catch sight of, contemplate, experience;" O.Pers. dī- "to see;" Skt. dhī- "to perceive, think, ponder; thought, reflection, meditation," dādhye; Gk. dedorka "have seen") + suffix -ak.
Fr.: disque miroir
The material on which the reflecting coating is applied. It may be glass, quartz, or metal.
→ mirror; blank "a piece of metal ready to be drawn, pressed, or machined into a finished object," from M.E., from O.Fr. blanc (adj.) from Gmc; cf. O.E. blanca "white horse," O.H.G. blanch "bright, white."
Fr.: ébauche de miroir
Same as → mirror blank.