azimuth

noun
az·​i·​muth | \ˈaz-məth, ˈa-zə-\

Definition of azimuth 

1 : an arc of the horizon measured between a fixed point (such as true north) and the vertical circle passing through the center of an object usually in astronomy and navigation clockwise from the north point through 360 degrees

2 : horizontal direction expressed as the angular distance between the direction of a fixed point (such as the observer's heading) and the direction of the object

Illustration of azimuth

Illustration of azimuth

azimuth 1: 1 horizon, 2 zenith, 3 star, 4 meridian, 5 vertical circle, 6 azimuth, 7 observer

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Other Words from azimuth

azimuthal \ ˌa-​zə-​ˈmə-​thəl \ adjective
azimuthally \ -​ˈmə-​thə-​lē \ adverb

Examples of azimuth in a Sentence

Recent Examples on the Web

On June 21, the sun sets at an azimuth of 302 degrees, or 32 degrees north of due west. Joe Rao, Scientific American, "Manhattanhenge: What It Is, and How to See It," 29 May 2018 But for the setting sun to be seen from all of Manhattan’s cross streets, its azimuth must be 299 degrees, or 29 degrees north of due west. Joe Rao, Scientific American, "Manhattanhenge: What It Is, and How to See It," 29 May 2018 The large yellow underwing moth, for instance, can use the moon’s azimuth (or horizontal bearing) to help orient its flight—a skill that other creatures, such as sand fleas, also employ to great effect. National Geographic, "Sex, Death, and Pollination: How the Moon Changes Life on Earth," 6 July 2017 When ice is particularly thick, the vessel can turn around and use its huge azimuth thrusters — a versatile type of propeller — to chew a path through the ice. Washington Post, "Battering rams of the Arctic: icebreakers, explained," 20 July 2017 The large yellow underwing moth, for instance, can use the moon’s azimuth (or horizontal bearing) to help orient its flight—a skill that other creatures, such as sand fleas, also employ to great effect. National Geographic, "Sex, Death, and Pollination: How the Moon Changes Life on Earth," 6 July 2017

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

14th century, in the meaning defined at sense 1

History and Etymology for azimuth

Middle English, from Medieval Latin azimut, from Arabic al-sumūt the azimuth, plural of al-samt the way

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Time Traveler for azimuth

The first known use of azimuth was in the 14th century

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More from Merriam-Webster on azimuth

Spanish Central: Translation of azimuth

Nglish: Translation of azimuth for Spanish Speakers

Britannica.com: Encyclopedia article about azimuth

Comments on azimuth

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