bi·​on·​ic | \ bī-ˈä-nik How to pronounce bionic (audio) \

Definition of bionic

1 : of or relating to bionics
2 : having normal biological capability or performance enhanced by or as if by electronic or electromechanical devices

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The science of bionics uses knowledge about how biological systems work to help solve engineering problems. The material Velcro, for example, was inspired by the way burrs behave when they stick to your clothes, and some computer chips are now wired in ways that imitate the "wiring" of the brain and nervous system. But in popular use, the adjective bionic almost always describes artificial limbs or other bodily parts that work as much like real ones as possible. A perfect bionic arm would move and function as easily as a real arm—a goal we're rapidly getting closer to.

Examples of bionic in a Sentence

Recent Examples on the Web

From there, all the scientists had to do was flash a light on their new bionic mushroom. David Grossman, Popular Mechanics, "Your Next Electrical Source: Bionic Mushrooms," 9 Nov. 2018 Lindsay played Jaime Sommers, a professional tennis player who suffers a serious skydiving injury and is saved by a surgical procedure involving bionic implants. Emma Dibdin, Country Living, "Who Is Lindsay Wagner? Meet The Star of Hallmark's 'Mingle All The Way'," 1 Dec. 2018 Our bionic descendants might be smart enough to invent warp-drive spaceships and time machines, Mr. Rees suggests. John Horgan, WSJ, "‘Brief Answers to the Big Questions’ and ‘On the Future’ Review: Serious Doubt on Serious Earth," 18 Oct. 2018 More metal is added to the frame as the plant grows, and the result is a unique (almost bionic) structure at the intersection of gardening and architecture. Lauren Smith, House Beautiful, "Meet the Largest Chrysanthemum in North America," 10 Aug. 2015 Sara Carter, 82, who has had knee replacements and lives in a Front Porch community called Sunny View, tried the bionic leg., "Meet 'Jimmy' the robot, new friend for senior California couple," 16 May 2018 Giuffria can put on her bionic arm and shake your hand. Matt Simon, WIRED, "Pain Is Weird. Making Bionic Arms Feel Pain Is Even Weirder," 22 June 2018 Each bionic hand costs only a couple hundred dollars and takes about a week to make, according to UNLV. Rebecca Bratek, CBS News, "8-year-old with 3D-printed hand throws out her 12th first pitch at MLB stadium," 12 June 2018 But driving one of these things is like wrestling a bionic octopus. Ezra Dyer, Popular Mechanics, "Can the New Nissan Leaf Compete With the Chevy Bolt and Tesla Model 3?," 16 May 2018

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

1961, in the meaning defined at sense 1

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Statistics for bionic

Last Updated

17 Apr 2019

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Time Traveler for bionic

The first known use of bionic was in 1961

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More Definitions for bionic



English Language Learners Definition of bionic

of body parts : made stronger or more capable by special electronic devices


bi·​on·​ic | \ bī-ˈän-ik How to pronounce bionic (audio) \

Medical Definition of bionic

1 : of or relating to bionics
2a : having normal biological capability or performance enhanced by or as if by electronic or electromechanical devices
b : comprising or made up of artificial body parts that enhance or substitute for a natural biological capability a bionic heart

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


one that collects or salvages junk

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