ai·​le·​ron | \ ˈā-lə-ˌrän How to pronounce aileron (audio) \

Definition of aileron

: a movable airfoil at the trailing edge of an airplane wing that is used for imparting a rolling motion especially in banking for turns — see airplane illustration

Examples of aileron in a Sentence

Recent Examples on the Web Whitcomb began a series of wind tunnel tests using a model of a DC-10, evaluating winglets at different airspeeds with different flap and aileron configurations. Eric Tegler, Popular Mechanics, 5 July 2020 In other words, the company still needs to see how the aircraft performs in moments of flight failure with the absence of a traditional airplane’s ailerons, flaps, spoilers, elevators, and even a tail. Caroline Delbert, Popular Mechanics, 13 Feb. 2020 Aviation history is littered with fatal crashes in which birds gunked up engines or knocked ailerons askew. Brendan I. Koerner, Wired, 24 Jan. 2020 For example, during takeoff and landing, the pilot of an airliner like a Boeing 747 will extend the flaps and slats on the wings to create more lift, and moving surfaces such as ailerons permit the plane to roll and turn. Rob Verger, Popular Science, 16 Jan. 2020 The left wing aileron trim tab remained intact and its pushrod was connected but bent., 16 Oct. 2019 The trip back from Hawaii achieved better fuel savings because of changes to the software that enabled the airplane to use the rudder to keep its position, as opposed to using the airplane's ailerons. Joe Pappalardo, Popular Mechanics, 17 July 2013 Felker rolls the agile aircraft back to our starting position and then performs a series of maneuvers that the Thunderbirds perform: 4-point roll, 8-point roll, aileron rolls, knife edge, Cuban 8 and so forth. Kelsey Grey, idahostatesman, 2 June 2018 The rudders and pedals at my feet and the stick in my hand are connected by wires that run through pulleys to the ailerons and elevator and rudder. Popular Mechanics, 18 July 2016

These example sentences are selected automatically from various online news sources to reflect current usage of the word 'aileron.' Views expressed in the examples do not represent the opinion of Merriam-Webster or its editors. Send us feedback.

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First Known Use of aileron

1909, in the meaning defined above

History and Etymology for aileron

French, from diminutive of aile wing — more at aisle

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Time Traveler for aileron

Time Traveler

The first known use of aileron was in 1909

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Dictionary Entries Near aileron



aileron roll

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Cite this Entry

“Aileron.” Dictionary, Merriam-Webster, Accessed 4 Aug. 2021.

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English Language Learners Definition of aileron

technical : a part of an airplane wing that can be moved up or down to cause the airplane to turn

More from Merriam-Webster on aileron

Nglish: Translation of aileron for Spanish Speakers Encyclopedia article about aileron


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