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
azimuthalplay \ˌa-zə-ˈmə-thəl\ adjective
azimuthallyplay \-ˈmə-thə-lē\ adverb
Recent Examples of azimuth from the Web
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.
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.
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.
Origin and Etymology of azimuth
Middle English, from Medieval Latin azimut, from Arabic al-sumūt the azimuth, plural of al-samt the way
First Known Use: 14th centurySee Words from the same year
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