hy·​per·​son·​ic | \ˌhī-pər-ˈsä-nik \

Definition of hypersonic 

1 : of or relating to speed five or more times that of sound in air — compare sonic

2 : moving, capable of moving, or utilizing air currents that move at hypersonic speed hypersonic wind tunnel

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Other Words from hypersonic

hypersonically \ ˌhī-​pər-​ˈsä-​ni-​k(ə-​)lē \ adverb

Examples of hypersonic in a Sentence

Recent Examples on the Web

The Air Force is pursuing the Arrow and Hacksaw hypersonic weapons programs, and a large, lumbering aircraft with plenty of external weapons pylons like the B-52 is perfect for the role. Kyle Mizokami, Popular Mechanics, "How B-52 Bombers Will Fly Until the 2050s," 10 Sep. 2018 Both visually and technologically, the airplane, which could be used for both military and commercial purposes, has much in common with an unmanned hypersonic surveillance and reconnaissance concept the company revealed in January. Eric Adams, WIRED, "Boeing’s Proposed Hypersonic Plane Is Really, Really Fast," 28 June 2018 The aircraft manufacturing giant unveiled on Tuesday a rendering of its concept for a hypersonic passenger plane. Natasha Bach, Fortune, "Boeing's New Hypersonic Jet Could Fly from the US to Japan in 3 Hours. But Will It Ever Take Off?," 27 June 2018 The hypersonic plane would fly almost three times faster than the legendary Concorde — which was decommissioned in 2003 — and cruise at 95,000 feet, about 3,000 feet higher than its supersonic predecessor, according to Aviation Week. Yaron Steinbuch, Fox News, "Boeing's concept jet could fly New York to London in 2 hours," 27 June 2018 This year China unveiled a unique design for a hypersonic passenger plane. Joe Pappalardo, Popular Mechanics, "How Boeing's Hypersonic Passenger Plane Concept Works," 26 June 2018 The Russian leader singled out the new Avangard hypersonic vehicle and the new Sarmat intercontinental ballistic missile, which are set to enter service in the next few years. Washington Post, "Putin: New Russian weapons decades ahead of foreign rivals," 29 June 2018 The Russian leader singled out the new Avangard hypersonic vehicle and the new Sarmat intercontinental ballistic missile, which are set to enter service in the next few years. Vladimir Isachenkov, chicagotribune.com, "Putin boasts Russia's nuclear weapons are decades ahead of foreign rivals," 28 June 2018 Russia's Avangard hypersonic glide vehicle is expected to enter service in 2020. Kyle Mizokami, Popular Mechanics, "The U.S. Air Force Is Pushing for a Hypersonic Strike Weapon," 11 June 2018

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

1946, in the meaning defined at sense 1

History and Etymology for hypersonic

International Scientific Vocabulary

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12 Nov 2018

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The first known use of hypersonic was in 1946

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