lift·​off | \ ˈlift-ˌȯf \

Definition of liftoff

: a vertical takeoff by an aircraft or a rocket vehicle or missile

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Synonyms & Antonyms for liftoff


blastoff, launch, takeoff



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Examples of liftoff in a Sentence

a series of successful liftoffs Thousand of spectators gathered to watch the liftoff of the space shuttle.

Recent Examples on the Web

The webcast below should begin about 20 minutes before liftoff. Eric Berger, Ars Technica, "SpaceX launches 2.5 tons of cargo to the ISS, but … [Updated]," 5 Dec. 2018 Deployment of the satellites will begin about 13 minutes after liftoff and conclude about 30 minutes after that point. Eric Berger, Ars Technica, "SpaceX flies rocket for the third time, will attempt fairing re-use [Updated]," 3 Dec. 2018 SpaceX has been a pioneer in re-usability, recovering first stages that have landed on a barge and on land, reducing both costs and turnaround time for liftoffs. Mark Skoneki,, "SpaceX will try again today for rocket launch," 11 May 2018 The huge cargo plane then ferries its delicate cargo across country for liftoff from a Florida spaceport. Kyle Mizokami, Popular Mechanics, "Watch a C-5 Galaxy Swallow a Satellite Whole," 28 Nov. 2018 Rocket Lab plans to livestream the launch once a time for liftoff is set. Loren Grush, The Verge, "Watch Rocket Lab try again to launch its first commercial mission to space," 10 Nov. 2018 Jeff Bezos’ private space company is getting ready for liftoff. Nicolas Vega, Fox News, "Jeff Bezos' space company set to launch," 28 Sep. 2018 For some the plane is a metaphor for a city ready for a liftoff. Graham Ambrose,, "In Fitchburg, a plane that’s not so simple," 11 June 2018 And even if everything goes according to plan, the challenges will start during liftoff. Rachel Becker, The Verge, "SpaceX’s Moon loop will affect passengers’ health — here’s how," 18 Sep. 2018

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

circa 1956, in the meaning defined above

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Statistics for liftoff

Last Updated

27 Jan 2019

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Time Traveler for liftoff

The first known use of liftoff was circa 1956

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More Definitions for liftoff



English Language Learners Definition of liftoff

: the upward movement from the ground by a rocket, helicopter, or space vehicle as it begins flight


lift·​off | \ ˈlift-ˌȯf \

Kids Definition of liftoff

: a vertical takeoff (as by a rocket)

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More from Merriam-Webster on liftoff

Rhyming Dictionary: Words that rhyme with liftoff

Thesaurus: All synonyms and antonyms for liftoff

Spanish Central: Translation of liftoff

Nglish: Translation of liftoff for Spanish Speakers Encyclopedia article about liftoff

Comments on liftoff

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


a servile follower or underling

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