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Noun: decay  di'key
  1. The process of gradually becoming inferior
     
  2. A gradual decrease; as of stored charge or current
    - decline
     
  3. The organic phenomenon of rotting
    - decomposition
     
  4. An inferior state resulting from the process of decaying
    "the corpse was in an advanced state of decay"; "the house had fallen into a serious state of decay and disrepair"
     
  5. The spontaneous disintegration of a radioactive substance along with the emission of ionizing radiation
    - radioactive decay, disintegration
Verb: decay  di'key
  1. (physics) lose a stored charge, magnetic flux, or current
    "the particles decayed during the nuclear fission process";
    - disintegrate, decompose
     
  2. Fall into decay or ruin
    "The unoccupied house started to decay";
    - crumble, dilapidate
     
  3. Undergo decay or decomposition
    "The body started to decay and needed to be cremated"

Derived forms: decayed, decays, decaying

Type of: action, activity, change, change integrity, decrease, decrement, natural action, natural process, nuclear reaction, organic phenomenon, unsoundness

Encyclopedia: Decay, radioactive