gy·​ro·​scope | \ ˈjī-rə-ˌskōp How to pronounce gyroscope (audio) , British also ˈgī- \

Definition of gyroscope

: a wheel or disk mounted to spin rapidly about an axis and also free to rotate about one or both of two axes perpendicular to each other and to the axis of spin so that a rotation of one of the two mutually perpendicular axes results from application of torque to the other when the wheel is spinning and so that the entire apparatus offers considerable opposition depending on the angular momentum to any torque that would change the direction of the axis of spin

Illustration of gyroscope

Illustration of gyroscope

Other Words from gyroscope

gyroscopic \ ˌjī-​rə-​ˈskä-​pik How to pronounce gyroscope (audio) \ adjective
gyroscopically \ ˌjī-​rə-​ˈskä-​pi-​k(ə-​)lē How to pronounce gyroscope (audio) \ adverb

Examples of gyroscope in a Sentence

Recent Examples on the Web The rocket uses the component — a type of electronic device called a fiber-optic gyroscope — for navigation, RUSI said. Jeanne Whalen, Washington Post, 15 June 2022 These smart swim goggles count your laps, pace, and even strokes per lap using a built in accelerometer and gyroscope. Outside Online, 27 May 2022 Though Playdate includes both a gyroscope and a crank, Boogie Loops doesn't take advantage of either for trippy, real-time sound-effect options. Sam Machkovech, Ars Technica, 18 Apr. 2022 The first autopilot system, which involved connecting a gyroscope to the wings and tail of a plane, débuted in 1914, about a decade after the Wright brothers took flight. The New Yorker, 17 Jan. 2022 The ultra-thin footbeds contains 72 pressure sensors, and the control unit has an accelerometer, gyroscope and magnetometer that captures 9-axis 3D motion. Larry Olmsted, Forbes, 23 Dec. 2021 One solution, Hudnut says, is to look for a watch that also has a gyroscope, which helps track changes in motion, irrespective of GPS. Richard A. Lovett, Outside Online, 17 Aug. 2020 It is equipped with a six-axis gyroscope and supports motion control. Chris Hachey, BGR, 24 Nov. 2021 This gyroscope is powered by a mixture of solar energy and a rotating turbine — if the gondolier so wishes. Nargess Banks, Forbes, 4 Oct. 2021 See More

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

First Known Use of gyroscope

1856, in the meaning defined above

History and Etymology for gyroscope


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The first known use of gyroscope was in 1856

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gyroscopic compass

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Last Updated

18 Jun 2022

Cite this Entry

“Gyroscope.” Dictionary, Merriam-Webster, Accessed 26 Jun. 2022.

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More Definitions for gyroscope


gy·​ro·​scope | \ ˈjī-rə-ˌskōp How to pronounce gyroscope (audio) \

Kids Definition of gyroscope

: a wheel mounted to spin rapidly so that its axis is free to turn in various directions

More from Merriam-Webster on gyroscope

Nglish: Translation of gyroscope for Spanish Speakers Encyclopedia article about gyroscope


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