ratchet

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ratchet

1. a device in which a toothed rack or wheel is engaged by a pawl to permit motion in one direction only
2. the toothed rack or wheel forming part of such a device

ratchet

[′rach·ət]
(design engineering)
A wheel, usually toothed, operating with a catch or a pawl so as to rotate in only a single direction.
References in periodicals archive ?
But if the FDA can ratchet down nicotine in conventional cigarettes to levels below what's in e-cigarettes, perhaps everyone who clings to smoking will switch to the higher-nicotine new products.
European Union lawmakers are seeking to further ratchet down the fees mobile operators charge users when they travel abroad, according to a draft plan seen by Reuters, taking aim at a lucrative source of industry profit.
6 billion in 2009 revenue, decided to ratchet down commodity risk by acquiring more rate-regulated utilities, it had to finance two major purchases within 12 months.
Yes, the insurers have had incentive to withhold care, ratchet down on payment to practitioners, and find ways to eliminate plan members who suddenly-become expensive.
He added: "But this trend offers a challenge for the American public: If we ratchet up our security concerns when the rate of terrorism rises, should we ratchet down our concerns when it falls?
But very few politicians in Washington - including Ben Bernanke- the chairman of the Federal Reserve think the programme will create the robust growth needed to ratchet down the unemployment rate.
Frustrated by the failure of the climate summit in Copenhagen to set binding limits on global greenhouse gas emissions, at least one island nation is pursuing a legal challenge as a means to ratchet down the emissions of industrialized nations.
You look at that and you say - why would anyone not want to make an investment with such a quick payback period to ratchet down their consumption and CO2 emissions?
Each foreclosure resets values in a market, appraisals ratchet down, and homes over $350,000-$400,000 remain unsold.
So, if Jafari's new rhetoric is meant to ratchet down the rhetoric, it isn't likely to be noticed in Israel.
While that's bad news for those looking for a pay rise this year, it's considered good for companies looking to ratchet down their wage costs.
Ma won the island's March 22 presidential election on the back of vows to ratchet down the more than half-century of cross-strait rivalry amid flourishing trade ties between Taiwan and China.