air·​plane | \ ˈer-ˌplān How to pronounce airplane (audio) \

Definition of airplane

: a powered heavier-than-air aircraft with fixed wings from which it derives most of its lift

Illustration of airplane

Illustration of airplane

airplane: 1 weather radar, 2 cockpit, 3 jet engine, 4 engine pod, 5 pylon, 6 wing, 7 vertical stabilizer, 8 rudder, 9, 10 tabs, 11 elevator, 12 horizontal stabilizer, 13 inboard flap, 14 inboard spoiler, 15, 16 tabs, 17 aileron, 18 outboard flap, 19 outboard spoiler, 20 sound suppressor, 21 thrust reverser, 22 cabin air intake, 23 fuselage, 24 nose landing gear

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Synonyms for airplane


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Examples of airplane in a Sentence

my uncle learned how to fly an airplane during World War II
Recent Examples on the Web The articles and monographs published since then would fill an airplane hangar, but what’s amazing is how little has changed. Bill Mckibben, The New Yorker, "What Have We Learned in Thirty Years of Covering Climate Change?," 7 Oct. 2020 Republican candidates for Alaska’s House of Representatives gathered in an airplane hangar at Lake Hood Seaplane Base on the day before the president’s infection became public knowledge. James Brooks, Anchorage Daily News, "Alaska Republican events continue in person after Trump’s COVID-19 diagnosis," 4 Oct. 2020 The second iteration of the airplane had the weight of a car, a wingspan larger than a jumbo jet and the power of a scooter, says Piccard. Cnn Staff; Story By Tom Page, CNN, "Bertrand Piccard: The explorer who wants to clean up the skies, and the rest of the planet," 2 Oct. 2020 As a result, the flight deck was extremely hot while the rest of the airplane was very cold. John Cox, USA TODAY, "Ask the Captain: How does ice on the wing affect the way a plane flies?," 1 Oct. 2020 The actual treatments come after an overnight deep cleaning of the airplane. Scott Mccartney, WSJ, "To Battle Covid, Airlines Bet on Disinfectants That Come With Questions," 30 Sep. 2020 Switzerland hasn’t fought a war since before the invention of the airplane. Kyle Mizokami, Popular Mechanics, "Switzerland Hasn't Gone to War in 200 Years. Why Does It Need New Fighter Jets?," 23 Sep. 2020 While my day-to-day has changed considerably since last year, my desire for great-sounding music and the ability to block out noise—car alarms and my partner’s conference calls rather than the drone of an airplane—hasn’t. Sebastian Modak, Condé Nast Traveler, "The Best Noise-Cancelling Headphones Just Got Even Better," 11 Sep. 2020 Aviation fans will find just as much attention paid to the exterior and interior details of each airplane, from Dreamliners to Cesna’s and everything in between. Jacob Krol, CNN Underscored, "Microsoft Flight Simulator 2020 lets you take to the skies with breathtaking realism across the board," 24 Aug. 2020

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

1906, in the meaning defined above

History and Etymology for airplane

alteration of aeroplane

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Time Traveler for airplane

Time Traveler

The first known use of airplane was in 1906

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Statistics for airplane

Last Updated

16 Oct 2020

Cite this Entry

“Airplane.” Dictionary, Merriam-Webster, Accessed 20 Oct. 2020.

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More Definitions for airplane


How to pronounce airplane (audio)

English Language Learners Definition of airplane

US : a machine that has wings and an engine and that flies through the air


air·​plane | \ ˈer-ˌplān How to pronounce airplane (audio) \

Kids Definition of airplane

: an aircraft with wings which do not move, that is heavier than air, is driven by a propeller or jet engine, and is supported by the action of the air against its wings

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