flyby

noun
fly·​by | \ ˈflī-ˌbī \
plural flybys

Definition of flyby

1 : a prearranged usually low-altitude flight by one or more airplanes over a public gathering (such as an air show)
2a : a flight of a spacecraft past a celestial body (such as Mars) close enough to obtain scientific data
b : a spacecraft that makes a flyby

Examples of flyby in a Sentence

Recent Examples on the Web

This is the second time New Horizons has managed a delicate flyby of a distant solar system target. Avery Thompson, Popular Mechanics, "Here Is the First Image from New Horizons' Ultima Thule Flyby," 2 Jan. 2019 Ever since that flyby, New Horizons has been plunging farther into the Solar System. Loren Grush, The Verge, "On New Year’s Day, a spacecraft will zoom by the most distant object humanity has ever visited," 27 Dec. 2018 This speed-boosting, trajectory-altering flyby would steer the spacecraft-asteroid combo toward the hazardous object. Mike Wall, Space.com, "Asteroid Billiards: This Wild Idea to Protect Earth Just Might Work," 24 Aug. 2018 If all goes to plan, NASA TV’s live stream should come online for both the flyby and the accompanying press conferences. Loren Grush, The Verge, "How to watch as NASA sends a spacecraft past a rock at the edge of the Solar System," 30 Dec. 2018 There were back up plans for a more distant flyby, but everything is showing up crystal clear. David Grossman, Popular Mechanics, "New Horizons Will Spend New Years Exploring Ultima Thule, a Billion Miles Past Pluto," 19 Dec. 2018 With this solid rocket motor kick stage, Goldstein said Clipper would need just a single Earth gravity assist and would not have to go into the inner Solar System for a Venus flyby. Eric Berger, Ars Technica, "A congressman’s loss clouds the future of two demanding missions to Europa," 3 Dec. 2018 The spacecraft did a flyby of Earth in September 2017, using our planet’s gravity to shift position and put the vehicle on the right path to the asteroid. Loren Grush, The Verge, "After a two-year journey, a NASA spacecraft arrives at its target asteroid," 3 Dec. 2018 That includes planetary flybys dating back to the early 1960s, as well as orbiters and landers. Marcia Dunn, The Seattle Times, "Mars revisited: NASA spacecraft days away from risky landing," 21 Nov. 2018

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

1953, in the meaning defined at sense 1

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Last Updated

5 Feb 2019

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The first known use of flyby was in 1953

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More Definitions for flyby

flyby

noun

English Language Learners Definition of flyby

US : a usually low flight past a group of people at an air show, during a parade, etc., by an aircraft or group of aircraft
: a flight of a spacecraft past a planet, moon, etc.

More from Merriam-Webster on flyby

Rhyming Dictionary: Words that rhyme with flyby

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