in·​ter·​cep·​tor | \ ˌin-tər-ˈsep-tər How to pronounce interceptor (audio) \
variants: or less commonly intercepter

Definition of interceptor

: one that intercepts specifically : a light high-speed fast-climbing fighter plane or missile designed for defense against raiding bombers or missiles

Examples of interceptor in a Sentence

Recent Examples on the Web Forewarning was basically the only way a manned interceptor could catch the SR-71, and Blackbird crews relied on solid planning that ensured the superfast jet never flew predictable mission profiles. Kyle Mizokami, Popular Mechanics, "SR-71 Blackbird Pilot Reveals What It Was Like to Fly the Fastest Plane Ever," 31 Dec. 2020 Among those requests that were approved came from Raytheon in 2011 for $424 million for SM-3 Block IIA interceptor development and testing, Brooks said. Paul Gattis |, al, "Mo Brooks embraces controversy as he leads longshot fight for Trump," 28 Dec. 2020 The shooter then launches an interceptor, and the EKV steers itself into the warhead path. Kyle Mizokami, Popular Mechanics, "The Navy Has Shot Down an Intercontinental Ballistic Missile for the First Time," 17 Nov. 2020 South Korea’s Foreign Ministry declined to comment on the missile interceptor system. Los Angeles Times, "From a crab shack to Hyundai, China’s wrath over a U.S. missile defense system weighs on South Korea," 19 Nov. 2020 On Monday a missile interceptor launched from a Navy destroyer successfully brought down a test intercontinental ballistic missile for the first time, according to the U.S. Missile Defense Agency. The Editorial Board, WSJ, "A Missile Defense Triumph," 19 Nov. 2020 Although the interceptor may hold up for years, or not, surgery is underway. Kevin Spear,, "Orlando’s secret life of sewers: What workers hope you never know," 18 Nov. 2020 It was destroyed by an advanced SM-3 Block IIA ballistic missile defense interceptor made by Raytheon Missiles & Defense and co-developed with Japan’s Mitsubishi Heavy Industries, a statement said. David Aaro, Fox News, "US shoots down ICBM in space from warship for first time in successful test," 17 Nov. 2020 The target missile was not equipped with decoys or other sophisticated systems of the kind that a U.S. missile interceptor might face in a real attack on the U.S. homeland. Robert Burns, Star Tribune, "Pentagon says it shot down unarmed missile in sea-based test," 17 Nov. 2020

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

1598, in the meaning defined above

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Time Traveler for interceptor

Time Traveler

The first known use of interceptor was in 1598

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Last Updated

10 Feb 2021

Cite this Entry

“Interceptor.” Dictionary, Merriam-Webster, Accessed 27 Feb. 2021.

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English Language Learners Definition of interceptor

: a fast military plane or missile used to defend against enemy planes or enemy missiles

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Nglish: Translation of interceptor for Spanish Speakers

Britannica English: Translation of interceptor for Arabic Speakers Encyclopedia article about interceptor

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