: carrying, staffed, or performed by one or more people
a manned security booth
manned spaceflight
a manned mission
Usage of Manned and Unmanned

While manned and unmanned are still commonly used in news sources to describe spaceflights with and without human crews, respectively, NASA has since the early 21st century used and prescribed non-gender-specific terms, preferring such descriptors as human, piloted, and crewed for the former, and unpiloted and uncrewed for the latter.

Example Sentences

a manned mission to the moon
Recent Examples on the Web The Soviets later put the first living things in orbit around the moon—tortoises and plants, mostly, because a manned version of that mission (Zond-5, in 1968) was deemed too risky. Steven Poole, WSJ, 17 Nov. 2022 The shuttle was a flying money pit that prevented us from launching vastly more efficient programs, like the Mars rovers, and even other attempts at manned flight. Amos Zeeberg, Discover Magazine, 22 July 2011 This program is planning on being the first manned mission to Mars. Q.ai - Powering A Personal Wealth Movement, Forbes, 10 Jan. 2023 The good news is any data gathered by the NASA instrument onboard will help choose a proper landing zone for future Artemis missions, especially the next manned mission to the moon. Jacob Siegal, BGR, 5 Jan. 2023 Dream Chaser’s first manned mission is scheduled to depart three years later. Jaclyn Trop, Robb Report, 29 Dec. 2022 Today SpaceX's fifth manned mission to the International Space Station (ISS) launched from NASA's Kennedy Space Center in Florida on Wednesday, and at the helm as commander is Nicole Mann, the first Native American woman to go to space. Catherine Garcia, The Week, 6 Oct. 2022 Ultimately, the Navy could have as many as 150 unmanned ships, acting as force multipliers for the manned fleet. Kyle Mizokami, Popular Mechanics, 6 Sep. 2022 Boeing plans to conduct a manned launch of its CST-100 Starliner in 2018. Carl Engelking, Discover Magazine, 1 Sep. 2016 See More

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

Word History

First Known Use

1583, in the meaning defined above

Time Traveler
The first known use of manned was in 1583

Dictionary Entries Near manned

Cite this Entry

“Manned.” Merriam-Webster.com Dictionary, Merriam-Webster, https://www.merriam-webster.com/dictionary/manned. Accessed 22 Mar. 2023.

Kids Definition


: carrying or performed by a person
manned spaceflight

More from Merriam-Webster on manned

Last Updated: - Updated example sentences
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