- a self-sustaining series of chemical or nuclear reactions in which the products of the reaction contribute directly to the process: it can be started by light, an electric spark, bombardment with neutrons, etc.
- any sequence of events, each of which results in, or has an effect on, the following
- A series of events in which each induces or influences the next.
- Physics A multistage nuclear reaction, especially a self-sustaining series of fissions in which the release of neutrons from the splitting of one atom leads to the splitting of others.
- Chemistry A series of reactions in which one product of a reacting set is a reactant in the following set.
(plural chain reactions)
- (physics) A nuclear reaction in which particles produced by the fission of one atom trigger fissions of other atoms.
- The Manhattan Project produced the first recorded controlled chain reaction.
- (idiomatic) A series of events, each one causing the next.
- The bombs all exploded in a chain reaction.