as·​tro·​naut | \ ˈa-strə-ˌnȯt How to pronounce astronaut (audio) , -ˌnät \

Definition of astronaut

: a person who travels beyond the earth's atmosphere also : a trainee for spaceflight

Examples of astronaut in a Sentence

Recent Examples on the Web Closer to terra firma, astronauts and orbiting satellites captured stunning views of Earth from above, and rocket launches painted the skies with their glowing exhaust plumes. Michael Greshko, National Geographic, "See our favorite space pictures from 2019," 27 Nov. 2019 The gateway is a mini-space station that will orbit the Moon and serve as a base for astronauts and landing craft. Lee Roop |, al, "Senate’s 2020 budget gives NASA $1.2B more for Moon shot," 31 Oct. 2019 This would help astronauts and celestial miners identify which targets would be safest for extraction. Jennifer Leman, Popular Mechanics, "Construction Company Caterpillar Wants To Mine the Moon," 30 Oct. 2019 At one table, cowboys are drinking coffee, while Snow White, an Indian brave, an astronaut, and Goofy are standing in line with their trays. James Marcus, The New Yorker, "A Dark Ride," 29 Oct. 2019 The pair aren't the first women to walk in space: 12 pioneering astronauts and cosmonauts made that step into the final frontier before them. Aj Willingham, CNN, "A surprise party, Sriracha secrets and some serious twinning," 19 Oct. 2019 Lockley has worked with astronauts and Formula 1 race car drivers to improve sleep quality through light exposure. Wired, "Tired of Jet Lag? This App Will Help Reset Your Clock," 16 Oct. 2019 This year, the group toured NASA’s Mission Control Center, Building 9, Johnson Space Center and Space Center Houston, and also ate lunch with NASA astronaut and aerospace engineer Jeanette Epps. Rachel Desantis,, "All-Women Delta Crew Flies 120 Girls to NASA Headquarters to Empower Female Aviators," 11 Oct. 2019 In Houston, the group participated in a range of activities, including touring NASA's Mission Control Center and eating lunch with NASA astronaut and aerospace engineer Jeanette Epps. Sophie Lewis, CBS News, "All-women Delta crew flies 120 girls to NASA to encourage female aviators," 11 Oct. 2019

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

1928, in the meaning defined above

History and Etymology for astronaut

astr- + -naut (as in aeronaut)

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Time Traveler for astronaut

Time Traveler

The first known use of astronaut was in 1928

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Statistics for astronaut

Last Updated

5 Dec 2019

Cite this Entry

“Astronaut.” The Dictionary, Merriam-Webster Inc., Accessed 13 December 2019.

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More Definitions for astronaut


How to pronounce astronaut (audio)

English Language Learners Definition of astronaut

: a person who travels in a spacecraft into outer space


as·​tro·​naut | \ ˈa-strə-ˌnȯt How to pronounce astronaut (audio) \

Kids Definition of astronaut

: a person who travels beyond the earth's atmosphere : a traveler in a spacecraft

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More from Merriam-Webster on astronaut

Rhyming Dictionary: Words that rhyme with astronaut

Spanish Central: Translation of astronaut

Nglish: Translation of astronaut for Spanish Speakers

Britannica English: Translation of astronaut for Arabic Speakers Encyclopedia article about astronaut

Comments on astronaut

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


easily led, controlled, or managed

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