micro-, micr-

(Greek: small, tiny; also, a decimal prefix used in the international metric system for measurements)

One millionth part of [something]; in the metric system: 10-6 [0.000 001].

microliter (µL)
One µL is a very tiny drop of water.
Any of several techniques for the production of micro scale devices; especially, the production of semiconductor devices using beams of photons or electrons.
micrology (s) (noun) (no plural)
1. A branch of science that gives attention to very small forms of research: The students were upset that the professor was assigning them to investigate the micrology of insects living in winter conditions.
2. Attention that is given to or a study that involves trivial or unimportant matters or petty differences: Andre was accused of committing a micrology when he complained that Mason arrived five minutes late for a meeting.
A discussion of trivial matters or petty differences.
© ALL rights are reserved.

Go to this Word A Day Revisited Index
so you can see more of Mickey Bach's cartoons.

1. The microminiaturization of mechanical devices; such as, gears, motors, rotors, etc. using similar photomasking techniques as in chip making.
2. The combination of minuscule electrical and mechanical components in a single device less than one millimeter across; such as, a valve or a motor.

Although micromechanical production processes and applications are still in the developmental process, efforts have been started to develop machines; called micromachines or micromechanisms, which will be 1,000 times smaller.

Pollinated by small bees.
A reference to the process of being pollinated by small bees.
micron, mikron
1. Also called micrometer, it is the millionth part of a meter. Symbol: μ, mu.
2. In chemistry, it is a colloidal particle whose diameter is between 0.2 and 10 microns.
3. In physics, it is a very small unit of pressure, equal to that exerted by a column of mercury 1μ high.

The links on a microchain drive created by Sandia National laboratories in Albuquerque, New Mexico, USA, and announced in January, 2002, are only 50 micrometers apart.

The microchain is constructed of silicon and is designed to transmit power in micro-electromechanical devices.

A microchain that closely resembles a bicycle chain—except that each link could rest comfortably on a human hair—has been fabricated at the Department of Energy’s Sandia National Laboratories. The distance between chain link centers is 50 microns. The diameter of a human hair is approximately 70 microns.

The term was officially sanctioned as part of the metric system from 1879-1967 and is still used in some fields of activity.


Related "few, small, less, little" word units: mini-; mio-, meio-; nano-; oligo-, olig-.

Related "metric" families: yotta; zetta; exa; peta; tera; giga; mega; kilo; hecto; deka; deci; centi; milli; nano; pico; femto; atto; zepto; yocto.