noun, often attributive
air·​craft | \ ˈer-ˌkraft How to pronounce aircraft (audio) \
plural aircraft

Definition of aircraft

: a vehicle (such as an airplane or balloon) for traveling through the air

Examples of aircraft in a Sentence

a company that manufactures aircraft

Recent Examples on the Web

Drones near wildfires pose a danger to the aircraft assigned to the fires, leading them to be grounded immediately, according to a press release. Grace Oldham, azcentral, "Coldwater Fire crews work toward containment along Highway 87; expect travel delays in area," 10 June 2019 Two key lawmakers said Friday that Boeing planned to delay fixing a nonworking safety alert on its 737 Max aircraft for three years and sped up the process only after the first of two deadly crashes involving Max planes last October. San Diego Union-Tribune, "2 lawmakers say Boeing originally wanted to wait 3 years to fix 737 Max warning-light flaw," 7 June 2019 Investigators went on to recommend that the MAX fleet stay grounded until authorities validate changes that Boeing has made to the aircraft. Andy Pasztor, WSJ, "American Airlines Devising Extra Simulator Training for Boeing 737 Cockpit Crews," 15 Apr. 2019 Francis greeted the Airbus A320's captain and two of its flight attendants at the top of the stairs to the aircraft before taking his seat inside. Fox News, "The Latest: Pope Francis arrives in Lithuanian capital," 22 Sep. 2018 Experts agree that even a little bit of knowledge, combined with unfettered access to aircraft, could be a toxic combination in the wrong hands. Barbara Peterson, Condé Nast Traveler, "How Did the Horizon Air Worker Fly a Plane Without Formal Training?," 13 Aug. 2018 The largest intact section of the aircraft was about 50 feet long, Mr. Hawthorne said at a news conference. Alison Sider, WSJ, "Plane Flying Cargo for Amazon Crashes in Texas," 23 Feb. 2019 This is mainly due to rising oil prices: Fuel accounts for 17 to 22 percent of an aircraft’s operation costs, and the price of jet fuel has gone up 50 percent in the past year. Aditi Shrikant, Vox, "Why airlines are allowed to overbook their flights," 14 Nov. 2018 At some point after May 3rd, searchers found part of the missing aircraft’s cockpit and the flight data recorder. Kyle Mizokami, Popular Mechanics, "The U.S. Ends Search for Missing F-35 Fighter Jet," 10 May 2019

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

1845, in the meaning defined above

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Statistics for aircraft

Last Updated

14 Jun 2019

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Time Traveler for aircraft

The first known use of aircraft was in 1845

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More Definitions for aircraft



English Language Learners Definition of aircraft

: a machine (such as an airplane or a helicopter) that flies through the air


air·​craft | \ ˈer-ˌkraft How to pronounce aircraft (audio) \
plural aircraft

Kids Definition of aircraft

: a vehicle (as an airplane or helicopter) that can travel through the air and that is supported either by its own lightness or by the action of the air against its surfaces

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Comments on aircraft

What made you want to look up aircraft? Please tell us where you read or heard it (including the quote, if possible).


to take the place or position of

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