launch vehicle


Definition of launch vehicle

: a rocket used to launch a satellite or spacecraft

Examples of launch vehicle in a Sentence

Recent Examples on the Web

In 2005 the organization attempted to launch its first solar sail, Cosmos 1, but its Russian launch vehicle failed to reach orbit. Robert Z. Pearlman, Scientific American, "Solar Sailing Success: Planetary Society Deploys LightSail 2," 23 July 2019 Apollo 11, the first manned lunar mission, launched from The Kennedy Space Center, Florida via a Saturn V launch vehicle on July 16, 1969. Alex Stuckey, Houston Chronicle, "Listen: We made it! Neil Armstrong and Buzz Aldrin land on the moon," 18 July 2019 Recovering and reusing parts of its rockets is at the core of SpaceX's plans to make its launch vehicles cheaper. Jackie Wattles, CNN, "SpaceX shares vibrant footage from its first-ever nose cone recovery," 5 July 2019 The officials said both missiles were fired from mobile launch vehicles, but more analysis was needed to determine whether the missiles were based on ballistic technology. Choe Sang-hun, New York Times, "North Korea Launches Two Short-Range Missiles, South Korea Says," 24 July 2019 The Soviets were the first to make powerful launch vehicles by adapting World War II-era long-range missiles, especially the German V-2. Jean Creighton, Quartz, "These innovations from the Moon landing changed life on Earth," 19 July 2019 Kennedy worked for years on launch vehicles, multiple spacecraft programs and ground systems while at Lockheed Martin, General Dynamics and Advanced Information Systems. Judith Kohler, The Denver Post, "Colorado aerospace veterans’ small company opening new frontiers in international trade, open-source systems," 19 July 2019 Taken together with the burgeoning market for small launch vehicles, Branson may soon be rolling in cosmic cash. Daniel Oberhaus, WIRED, "Virgin Orbit Just Dropped a Rocket From a Boeing 747," 10 July 2019 Elvis points to private rocket companies, such as Elon Musk’s SpaceX, that are driving down the cost of launching vehicles into orbit. Adam Mann, Scientific American, "The New Scramble for the Moon," 26 June 2019

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

See More

First Known Use of launch vehicle

circa 1960, in the meaning defined above

Keep scrolling for more

Learn More about launch vehicle

Statistics for launch vehicle

Last Updated

11 Aug 2019

Look-up Popularity

Time Traveler for launch vehicle

The first known use of launch vehicle was circa 1960

See more words from the same year

More from Merriam-Webster on launch vehicle Encyclopedia article about launch vehicle

Comments on launch vehicle

What made you want to look up launch vehicle? Please tell us where you read or heard it (including the quote, if possible).


a usually brief trip or an expedition

Get Word of the Day daily email!

Test Your Vocabulary

Summer 2019 Words of the Day Quiz

  • a-bowl-of-peach-sorbet-with-cut-peaches-next-to-it
  • Which is a synonym of desideratum?
True or False

Test your knowledge - and maybe learn something along the way.


Test Your Knowledge - and learn some interesting things along the way.

Love words? Need even more definitions?

Subscribe to America's largest dictionary and get thousands more definitions and advanced search—ad free!