ep·​i·​taxy ˈe-pə-ˌtak-sē How to pronounce epitaxy (audio)
: the growth on a crystalline substrate of a crystalline substance that mimics the orientation of the substrate
epitaxial adjective
epitaxially adverb

Example Sentences

Recent Examples on the Web The previous method, molecular beam epitaxy, resulted in larger quantum dots that were less useful and unstable at all but the most extremely cold temperatures. Caroline Delbert, Popular Mechanics, 18 Dec. 2019

These example sentences are selected automatically from various online news sources to reflect current usage of the word 'epitaxy.' Views expressed in the examples do not represent the opinion of Merriam-Webster or its editors. Send us feedback.

Word History


borrowed from French épitaxie, from épi- epi- + Greek táxis "arrangement, disposition" + French -ie -y entry 2 — more at taxis

Note: The term was introduced by the French mineralogist Louis Royer (1895-1980) in "Recherches expérimentales sur l'épitaxie ou orientation mutuelle de cristaux d'espèces différentes," Bulletin de la Société française de minéralogie, tome 51 (1928), p. 8.

First Known Use

circa 1931, in the meaning defined above

Time Traveler
The first known use of epitaxy was circa 1931

Dictionary Entries Near epitaxy

Cite this Entry

“Epitaxy.” Merriam-Webster.com Dictionary, Merriam-Webster, https://www.merriam-webster.com/dictionary/epitaxy. Accessed 26 Nov. 2022.

More from Merriam-Webster on epitaxy

Love words? Need even more definitions?

Subscribe to America's largest dictionary and get thousands more definitions and advanced search—ad free!

Commonly Confused Words Quiz

  • vector image of a face with thought expression
  • I went to the ______ store to buy a birthday card.
How Strong Is Your Vocabulary?

Test your vocabulary with our 10-question quiz!

Universal Daily Crossword

A daily challenge for crossword fanatics.