air traffic control


Definition of air traffic control

: the process or system by which the movements of aircraft are monitored and directed by ground personnel communicating with pilots by radio improving the technology used for air traffic control also : the personnel who operate an air traffic control system Pilots would still have to file flight plans, which could be modified by air traffic control if they posed any safety hazards. — David R. Hinson

Examples of air traffic control in a Sentence

Recent Examples on the Web How will air traffic control adapt to a world with rockets blasting off as often as planes take to the skies? Charlie Wood, Popular Science, "The military wants one-hour global delivery. SpaceX thinks it can pull it off.," 16 Oct. 2020 The software's longevity and attention to detail built up a fervent following over the years, with some fans developing an online air traffic control network called VATSIM. NBC News, "Now boarding: A trip anywhere in Microsoft Flight Simulator's virtual world," 4 Oct. 2020 His 1991 dissertation was on the analysis and optimization of terminal area air traffic control operations. Stefania Spezzati,, "Barclays Revamp Puts Staley’s JPMorgan Cohort in Spotlight," 1 Oct. 2020 Hospitals broker patient exchanges through a transfer center, a unit similar to air traffic control in an airport. Melanie Evans, WSJ, "Why Hospitals Can’t Handle Covid Surges: They’re Flying Blind," 30 Sep. 2020 Improvements included a squadron operations building, an air traffic control tower, and a hangar. Abraham Mahshie, Washington Examiner, "Lithuanian air base highlights US investments in Europe that followed Russian invasion of Ukraine," 26 Sep. 2020 In the not-too-distant future, ultrasensitive radio telescopes might be able to pick up the beams of a radar, like the ones used for air traffic control, from a distant exoplanet. Daniel Clery, Science | AAAS, "How big money is powering a massive hunt for alien intelligence," 10 Sep. 2020 With the back-to-back sightings, air traffic control officials then issued a warning to planes in the area, including a JetBlue flight. Joelle Goldstein,, "Airplane Pilots Report Man Flying Jetpack 3,000 Feet Above Los Angeles: 'Only in L.A.'," 2 Sep. 2020 And in either case, that person should not be flying over an airport, especially without air traffic control having any knowledge of it. Courtney Linder, Popular Mechanics, "'Guy in a Jetpack' Spotted Flying 3,000 Feet Over LAX, Which Is Insane If True," 1 Sep. 2020

These example sentences are selected automatically from various online news sources to reflect current usage of the word 'air traffic control.' 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 air traffic control

1919, in the meaning defined above

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Time Traveler for air traffic control

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The first known use of air traffic control was in 1919

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Statistics for air traffic control

Last Updated

31 Oct 2020

Cite this Entry

“Air traffic control.” Dictionary, Merriam-Webster, Accessed 1 Dec. 2020.

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More Definitions for air traffic control

air traffic control


English Language Learners Definition of air traffic control

: a system through which people on the ground give instructions by radio to aircraft pilots
: the people who give instructions to aircraft pilots by radio

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