exo·​skel·​e·​ton | \ ˌek-sō-ˈske-lə-tən How to pronounce exoskeleton (audio) \

Definition of exoskeleton

1 : an external supportive covering of an animal (such as an arthropod)
2 : bony or horny parts of a vertebrate produced from epidermal tissues
3 : an artificial external supporting structure

Keep scrolling for more

Other Words from exoskeleton

exoskeletal \ ˌek-​sō-​ˈske-​lə-​tᵊl How to pronounce exoskeletal (audio) \ adjective

Examples of exoskeleton in a Sentence

Recent Examples on the Web

The wounded crayfish managed to survive and appears well on its way to eventually shedding its exoskeleton and becoming whole again. USA TODAY, "Pride pickup, sphinx on move, Tony Stark’s cabin: News from around our 50 states," 13 June 2019 Armor - Fumi Nikaido A relatively recent addition to the X-Men mythos, the Japanese mutant, Hisako Ichiki, has the power to create a psychic exoskeleton that gives her super-strength and invulnerability. Richard Newby, The Hollywood Reporter, "Who Can Play the X-Men Now?," 7 June 2019 Beyond electrical stimulation, several groups are exploring soft exoskeletons. David Grossman, Popular Mechanics, "Paralyzed Man Walks Again With Surgical Implant," 25 Sep. 2018 Spider molting happens naturally when a spider sheds its exoskeleton for a larger one. David Grossman, Popular Mechanics, "How Wasps Turn Spiders Into Obedient Zombies," 30 Apr. 2019 Ford will issue a total of 75 exoskeletons to employees, which is a teeny, tiny sample size to Ford’s massive employee population. Laura Yan, Popular Mechanics, "Humans Wearing Exoskeletons Will Work in Ford Plants," 18 Aug. 2018 The modern solider is overburdened, so defense researchers have been trying to invent new ways to lighten the load, such as wearable exoskeletons that shoulder some of the weight. Kyle Mizokami, Popular Mechanics, "Grizzly Is a Rugged Tank Robot That Could Carry a Soldier’s Stuff," 29 Mar. 2019 Over the last decade, hyped technologies such as robotic mules and wearable exoskeletons promised to free up soldiers from hauling so much gear. David Hambling, Popular Mechanics, "The Overloaded Soldier: Why U.S. Infantry Now Carry More Weight Than Ever," 26 Dec. 2018 The exoskeletons of those enduring life-forms will be coated with barriers that prevent toxins from entering their bodies. Rob Dunn, Discover Magazine, "Our Attempts to Eradicate Insects are Just Making them Resistant to Pesticides," 16 Nov. 2018

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

See More

First Known Use of exoskeleton

1847, in the meaning defined at sense 1

Keep scrolling for more

Learn More about exoskeleton

Dictionary Entries near exoskeleton








Statistics for exoskeleton

Last Updated

17 Jun 2019

Look-up Popularity

Time Traveler for exoskeleton

The first known use of exoskeleton was in 1847

See more words from the same year

Keep scrolling for more

More Definitions for exoskeleton


exo·​skel·​e·​ton | \ ˌek-sō-ˈskel-ət-ᵊn How to pronounce exoskeleton (audio) \

Medical Definition of exoskeleton

1 : an external supportive covering of an animal (as the system of sclerites covering the body of an insect) — compare endoskeleton
2 : bony or horny parts (as nails, hooves, or scales) of a vertebrate produced from epidermal tissues

Other Words from exoskeleton

exoskeletal \ -​ət-​ᵊl How to pronounce exoskeletal (audio) \ adjective

More from Merriam-Webster on exoskeleton

Britannica.com: Encyclopedia article about exoskeleton

Comments on exoskeleton

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


showing courage and determination

Get Word of the Day daily email!

Test Your Vocabulary

Words for Summer: A Quiz

  • a closeup of a sunflower
  • Which of the following words means “of or relating to summer”?
True or False

Test your knowledge - and maybe learn something along the way.


Test Your Knowledge - and learn some interesting things along the way.

Love words? Need even more definitions?

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