down·​link | \ ˈdau̇n-ˌliŋk How to pronounce downlink (audio) \

Definition of downlink

 (Entry 1 of 2)

: a communications channel for receiving transmissions from a spacecraft also : such transmissions


downlinked; downlinking; downlinks

Definition of downlink (Entry 2 of 2)

transitive verb

: to transmit (data) from a spacecraft or satellite to a receiver on earth

Examples of downlink in a Sentence

Recent Examples on the Web: Noun With 20 dBm in uplink-output power and 12 dBm in downlink-output power, the booster easily reaches cellphone towers. Kim Komando, USA TODAY, "5 ways to boost your iPhone’s signal strength," 4 Dec. 2020 The team calculated that satellite transmissions will lead to a 70% loss in sensitivity in the downlink band. Daniel Clery, Science | AAAS, "Starlink already threatens optical astronomy. Now, radio astronomers are worried," 9 Oct. 2020 For the first phase, the adversary must be capable of sniffing radiolayer transmissions in downlink direction, which is possible with affordable hardware for less than $1,400 [1]. Dan Goodin, Ars Technica, "Hackers can eavesdrop on mobile calls with $7,000 worth of equipment," 13 Aug. 2020 But successful downlinks through Earth’s atmosphere depend on the weather. Sophia Chen, Wired, "Physicists Clear the Air With a Sweet Frickin' Laser Beam," 29 Apr. 2020 Both are technically 5G, but devices that support multiple 5G bands are expected to offer the superfast downlink speeds that have been promised with this next-generation wireless standard. Boone Ashworth, Wired, "Everything Samsung Announced at Its ‘Unpacked’ Event," 11 Feb. 2020 As a result, the spacecraft automatically entered safe mode, losing downlink with the Deep Space Network. John Wenz, Popular Mechanics, "NASA's Pluto-Bound Probe is Back Online and Ready to Go," 6 July 2015 Martian spacecraft have uplink and downlink windows that vary throughout the year due to differences between Earth and Mars rotations, according to Canberra. Joe Pappalardo, Popular Mechanics, "The Time I Thought a Mars Rover Spoke To Me On a Barstool," 15 June 2018 The downlink lasted only 20 minutes, but that precious time is something these students will always remember. David Aaro, miamiherald, "From space station, astronauts have long-distance video chat with students | Miami Herald," 30 Apr. 2018 Recent Examples on the Web: Verb The spacecraft was launched from Florida last month and images from this week’s deployment sequence were downlinked from the orbiter by flight controllers at California Polytechnic State University , San Luis Obispo. Washington Post, "Images show Lightsail 2 spacecraft’s solar sail has deployed," 26 July 2019 While all of the data from the recorders will be downlinked during the flight, the team needs to be able to recover at least one data recorder to provide a full backup if data is lost. Ashley Strickland, CNN, "NASA tests abort system for the Orion spacecraft that will carry humans to the moon in 2024," 2 July 2019 Those video files will be downlinked for Micro 11’s investigator study. Joe Pappalardo, Popular Mechanics, "Why There Are Sperm Swimming Around at the Space Station," 16 July 2018 The space telescope will fly in a large ellipse that takes it out beyond the moon and then in close to the Earth to downlink its data. Jay Bennett, Popular Mechanics, "SpaceX Successfully Launches TESS Space Telescope (Updated)," 18 Apr. 2018 The first science data, post-flyby, is expected to start downlinking to Earth on July 15, including imaging. John Wenz, Popular Mechanics, "NASA's Pluto-Bound Probe is Back Online and Ready to Go," 6 July 2015 Space felt a little closer to home at Fairchild Tropical Botanical Garden in Coral Gables as Miami students participated in a live question and answer downlink with two astronauts currently aboard the International Space Station(ISS). David Aaro, miamiherald, "From space station, astronauts have long-distance video chat with students | Miami Herald," 30 Apr. 2018 While the photos were successful, the astronauts found themselves in the unusual position of having no one to downlink their photo data. David Grossman, Popular Mechanics, "Hurricane Harvey Closes NASA Johnson Space Center," 28 Aug. 2017 On Monday, a NASA spokeswoman told Fox News the raw images were expected to be downlinked and available on Friday, July 14. Fox News, "PHOTOS: NASA's Juno spacecraft releases first images of Jupiter's Great Red Spot," 12 July 2017

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


1963, in the meaning defined above


1977, in the meaning defined above

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The first known use of downlink was in 1963

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Cite this Entry

“Downlink.” Dictionary, Merriam-Webster, Accessed 28 Feb. 2021.

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