thought experimentthought experiment
the act of reasoning through to the practical outcome of a hypothesis when physical proof is unavailable or unattainable
Origin of thought experimentcalque of German gedankenexperiment
An imagined sequence of events that is used to illustrate or investigate the consequences of a given action or condition, especially in philosophy and theoretical physics.
Origin of thought experimentTranslation of German Gedankenexperiment : Gedanke, thought + Experiment, experiment.
(plural thought experiments)