hy·​dro·​foil ˈhī-drə-ˌfȯi(-ə)l How to pronounce hydrofoil (audio)
: a body similar to an airfoil but designed for action in or on water
: a motorboat that has metal plates or fins attached by struts fore and aft for lifting the hull clear of the water as speed is attained

Illustration of hydrofoil

Illustration of hydrofoil
  • hydrofoil 2

Example Sentences

Recent Examples on the Web The designer sees the yacht with an all-electric propulsion system and hydrofoil technology that would give it a maximum speed of 32 knots. Rachel Cormack, Robb Report, 23 Mar. 2023 Any wear and tear from riding is now less visible, making your hydrofoil bike look newer for longer. Mike Espindle, Forbes, 29 June 2021 Foiling, which — to simplify things a little — uses hydrofoils to lift the craft out of the water, which reduces drag and gets the craft going faster. Brian Amaral, BostonGlobe.com, 17 Feb. 2023 There’s only one problem: Powered or not, a hydrofoil takes some practice and patience to learn to ride in a standing position, especially for people with no surfing or wakeboarding experience, or so-so balance skills. IEEE Spectrum, 23 Feb. 2023 Artemis Technologies—a spin-off from the Artemis Racing America’s Cup team—borrowed designs from its racing yachts to bring foiling technology to its passenger ferry; the vessel uses a hydrofoil wing attached to the hull with vertical struts. Tim Newcomb, Popular Mechanics, 29 Sep. 2022 Not quite 14 square miles large, Kimolos is less than a mile from its big sister island, Milos, and the distance between them can be bridged with an hour-long ferry ride or half-hour hydrofoil. Eleni N. Gage, Condé Nast Traveler, 30 June 2022 The WSL Surf Ranch in Lemoore, about three hours north of Los Angeles, uses a massive hydrofoil about the size of a locomotive to push perfect six-foot waves down a pool that stretches nearly seven football fields. Houston Mitchell Assistant Sports Editor, Los Angeles Times, 24 June 2021 However, building a hydrofoil of this size would undoubtedly be a hugely significant achievement. Tamara Hardingham-gill, CNN, 31 Jan. 2023 See More

These examples are programmatically compiled from various online sources to illustrate current usage of the word 'hydrofoil.' Any opinions expressed in the examples do not represent those of Merriam-Webster or its editors. Send us feedback about these examples.

Word History

First Known Use

1919, in the meaning defined at sense 1

Time Traveler
The first known use of hydrofoil was in 1919

Dictionary Entries Near hydrofoil

Cite this Entry

“Hydrofoil.” Merriam-Webster.com Dictionary, Merriam-Webster, https://www.merriam-webster.com/dictionary/hydrofoil. Accessed 30 May. 2023.

Kids Definition


hy·​dro·​foil ˈhī-drə-ˌfȯil How to pronounce hydrofoil (audio)
: a boat that has fins attached to the bottom by braces for lifting the hull clear of the water to allow faster speeds

More from Merriam-Webster on hydrofoil

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