Etymology
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think tank (n.)

also think-tank, 1959 as "research institute" (first reference is to Center for Behavioral Sciences, Palo Alto, Calif.); it had been colloquial for "the brain" since 1905. See think + tank (n.).

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Definitions of think tank

think tank (n.)
a company that does research for hire and issues reports on the implications;
Synonyms: think factory
From wordnet.princeton.edu