life span


Definition of life span

1 : the average length of life of a kind of organism or of a material object especially in a particular environment or under specified circumstances
2 : the duration of existence of an individual

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Examples of life span in a Sentence

the average life span of house cats increase the human life span

Recent Examples on the Web

While some animal welfare groups push for protecting rare species like polar bears in their natural habitat, other groups, like Polar Bears International, say rearing them in captivity allows the animals to have longer life spans. Marian Liu, CNN, "UK to get first glimpse of polar bear cub," 21 Mar. 2018 Zarya was originally designed with an operational life span of 15 years, but in 2013, a team of Russian engineers cleared it to remain in space through 2028. Kevin Dupzyk, Popular Mechanics, "What ISS Taught Us In the Past 20 Years," 20 Nov. 2018 The 8,000-hour life span is about typical for combat aircraft, with the F-15 and F-16 fighters originally rated for 8,000 and 9,000 hours, respectively. Kyle Mizokami, Popular Mechanics, "Some F-35s Could Become Unflyable by 2026," 1 Feb. 2019 The life span of children’s clothing is too short to make sense for such a splurge. Christian Allaire, Vogue, "How Young Is Too Young to Own Designer? 11 Fashion Moms Sound Off," 12 Jan. 2019 And life span can be thought of as how well the nucleolus balances the need to grow with the need to repair, correct mistakes and make sure everything works. Joanna Klein, New York Times, "The Thing Inside Your Cells That Might Determine How Long You Live," 20 May 2018 The disks can be used only on a computer that already has a license for the Windows operating system, and the license transfers with the computer for its full life span. Tom Jackman, Washington Post, "E-waste recycler Eric Lundgren loses appeal on computer restore disks, must serve 15-month prison term," 24 Apr. 2018 The loss of the grant is especially troublesome for RTA's paratransit fleet of 15 cutaway vehicles and 13 vans, which have all reached their useful life spans. Marie Simoneaux,, "S&WB says drainage system performed 'very well' Saturday, full assessment coming," 14 Apr. 2018 Researchers found other interesting patterns, finding​ longevity has more to do with environment and behavior; in fact, the data revealed genes are only 16 percent responsible for life span. Julissa Treviño, Smithsonian, "This May Be the World’s Largest Family Tree," 5 Mar. 2018

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

1831, in the meaning defined at sense 2

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Last Updated

15 Mar 2019

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Time Traveler for life span

The first known use of life span was in 1831

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More Definitions for life span

life span


English Language Learners Definition of life span

: the amount of time that a person or animal actually lives

life span

\ ˈlīf-ˌspan How to pronounce life span (audio) \

Medical Definition of life span

1 : the duration of existence of an individual
2 : the average length of life of a kind of organism or of a material object especially in a particular environment or under specified circumstances

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More from Merriam-Webster on life span

Rhyming Dictionary: Words that rhyme with life span

Thesaurus: All synonyms and antonyms for life span Encyclopedia article about life span

Comments on life span

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


grandiloquent, ostentatious, or bombastic

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