(redirected from spirals)
Also found in: Dictionary, Thesaurus, Medical, Legal, Encyclopedia.
Related to spirals: Fibonacci

death spiral

1. In aviation, a dangerous downward cork-screw maneuver of a disabled or uncontrollable aircraft that often leads to a crash. Also called a "spiral dive." The pilot, unaware of the plane's slight roll in the cloud bank, only realized he was in a death spiral when it was too late to overcome the dive.
2. In pairs figure skating, a maneuver in which the male partner, in a pivot position, spins the female partner with one hand in a wide circle with her body nearly parallel to the ground. The two pulled off an amazing death spiral—her head looked as though it were about to touch the ice at one point!
3. In insurance (especially health insurance), a plan in which costs rapidly increase over time due to policyholders with a lower risk opting out of the policy, forcing those dependent on it to pay higher premiums, thus prompting more low-risk policy holders to opt out and further drive up costs, and so on. I purchased my health insurance plan as a means to afford my medicine, but it turned into a death spiral when employers started offering cheaper, barebones plans that the majority of people were quick to switch to.
4. In finance, a loan given by investors to a company in exchange for convertible bonds, which can then be converted to common stock at prices lower than the market value, causing overall share prices to fall and more bondholders to trade their stock for equity, ultimately leading to a collapse of the company's stock worth altogether. To keep his company afloat, Tom was forced to take a loan that ultimately proved a death spiral, leading him to close the business anyway.
5. Any situation in which a series of events or actions, especially as a consequence of one another, ultimately lead to a point of ruin, failure, or destruction. With the recent allegations of drug abuse, corruption charges, and controversial remarks about minorities, the long-time senator now seems locked into an irreversible death spiral.
See also: death, spiral

spiral down

to descend in a spiral path. The ancient trail spiraled down the mountain peak. A path spiraled down and at the bottom was a small refreshment stand.
See also: down, spiral

spiral up

to ascend in a spiral path. The smoke spiraled up to the sky. The trail spiraled up the slope to the top.
See also: spiral, up
References in periodicals archive ?
These comprised Multotec HX5 and Multotec HX3 spirals with feed tonnage capacities ranging from 4-9 metric tons per hour (mt/h) per start.
Through a process of "how much/what kind of data do we have on this galaxy" elimination, the team whittled down the group of bright galaxies to a couple hundred and discovered that, although most were ellipticals, 53 were super spirals.
Super spirals have long hidden in plain sight by mimicking the appearance of typical spiral galaxies.
Basic Spiral is the simplest spiraling design, formed by randomly stitching open spirals in rows throughout your quilting space.
Infusion Spirals from the Barrel Mill come in a "distinctive" American Oak Char #3 toast level and can be purchased in packs of 6, 12 and 24.
But his motto could just as well describe the way that engineers keep discovering and rediscovering spirals.
Washington, December 20( ANI ): Observing a spiral disk around a young star could be an indirect method of detecting planets, scientists suggest.
This low tension Live Drum Spiral having longer runs and multiple tiers in its design can attain greater elevation changes compared to shaft and sprocket driven high tension spirals.
To find the corresponding day of the week for any date, locate the month, trace through the spiral until you find the number date, and then move your finger straight out to the edge of the circle to find the day of the week.
Different configurations of the spirals inductors that are illustrated in Fig.
Helix Spirals are available with a range of belt sizes and tier heights.
Combining women's herbs with the spiral design helps us to remember that energy moves in spirals, what comes up must come down, and we have to remember to love ourselves first.
Spirals abound throughout the natural and man-made world.
The spirals go one inch in one direction, then reverse and spiral one inch in the other direction," explains v.
The Bolles+Wilson design for the New Luxor Theatre in Rotterdam has a spiral plan, a continuous wall that first encloses and then spirals once more within the volume to divide the auditorium from the foyer.