- noun an apparatus that generates electricity by means of an irreversible chemical reaction
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- noun an electric cell that converts chemical energy into electrical energy in an irreversible process; unlike a secondary cell, it cannot be recharged
- A cell that generates electric current by electrochemical action. In the process, one of the electrodes is consumed and the process cannot be effectively reversed. The cell cannot be recharged from an external source of electric power.
- A cell, such as an alkaline or mercury cell, whose manner of discharge does not lend itself to recharging. For instance, the current produced may involve the dissolution of one of its plates. This contrasts with a secondary cell, which can be recharged multiple times. Also called non-rechargeable cell.