go critical

(redirected from goes critical)

go critical

1. To be able to function successfully. When do you think this new software will be able to go critical?
2. Of a nuclear reactor or power station, to be able to sustain a nuclear chain reaction. What protections do we have if the nuclear power plant goes critical?
See also: go
Farlex Dictionary of Idioms. © 2015 Farlex, Inc, all rights reserved.

go critical

1. If a project or organization goes critical, it reaches a stage of development where it can operate smoothly and successfully. The programme confirmed its initial impact in week two, and really `went critical' with the third edition on 8 December. Bristol airport is about to go critical. That will come when more than a million passengers a year pass through the terminal.
2. When a nuclear power station goes critical, it reaches a state in which a nuclear fission chain reaction can sustain itself. Monju went critical last year, and produced its first electricity in August this year.
See also: go
Collins COBUILD Idioms Dictionary, 3rd ed. © HarperCollins Publishers 2012
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References in periodicals archive ?
Once the second unit at Kudankulam goes critical, the total atomic power capacity in Tamil Nadu would go up to 2,440 MW.
Jeremy Keenan, "Uranium Goes Critical in Niger: Tuareg Rebellions Threaten Sahelian Conflagration," Review of African Political Economy.
"Just throwing water on to the reactors, when they cannot get inside to see what the situation is, could mean the fuel goes critical again.
He could very well replace Gordon Brown as prime minister if BritainAEs rapidly worsening financial crisis goes critical.Rebuking the Bush administration, the outspoken Miliband urged Washington to cease using aewar on terror,AE which he calls aemisleading and mistaken.AE
Missing another cycle would be fatal to his chances, unless he thinks he can wait, like De Gaulle, until the tides rise, the climate goes critical and he can be swept into power by a tsunami of acclaim.
The big celestial dust-up between Mercury and Pluto goes critical. You could find that someone becomes awkward about an agreement - and yet a pick-up in your financial situation can bring some cheer.
BioMEMS chips equipped with sensors could detect mutated genes or dangerous levels of hormones, and enable doctors to determine which tissues to treat long before the situation goes critical. The day may come when MEMS-enabled micro-robots, or even nanobots, travel through the body to clear arteries and make repairs, borrowing a scene from the classic 1966 sci-fi movie Fantastic Voyage.
Little-studied metal goes critical" (SN: 10/26/02, p.