mega·​ton | \ˈme-gə-ˌtən \

Definition of megaton 

: an explosive force equivalent to that of one million tons of TNT

Examples of megaton in a Sentence

an atomic explosion with a force of several megatons

Recent Examples on the Web

Designed to vaporize coastal cities and military facilities with up to a 100 megaton warhead, an incoming Poseidon torpedo would have to be stopped at all costs. Kyle Mizokami, Popular Mechanics, "The Navy’s Next Attack Submarine Will Be Big, Expensive," 22 Oct. 2018 The multi-megaton weapon, like something from a science fiction film, is designed to attack coastal targets, creating radioactive tsunamis and rendering entire regions uninhabitable. Kyle Mizokami, Popular Mechanics, "How Can We Stop Russia’s Apocalypse Nuke Torpedo?," 16 Aug. 2018 Even Trump, master media manipulator, doesn’t understand the megaton load of this subject. Chris Stirewalt, Fox News, "Is 2018 really all about Russia?," 18 July 2018 Dearborn's team modeled how a one-megaton device, detonated away from the surface of the asteroid Bennu — this is known as stand-off detonation, to direct a blast wave of X-rays toward the target — would affect its trajectory. Popular Mechanics, "The Asteroid Hunters," 11 Nov. 2015 Most hydrogen bombs are rated in megatons, the equivalent of 1,000 kilotons. Popular Mechanics Editors, Popular Mechanics, "What To Do in a Nuclear Attack," 7 Feb. 2018 Reports from Russia indicate the bomb could be as large as 100 megatons. Kyle Mizokami, Popular Mechanics, "Pentagon Document Confirms Existence of Russian Doomsday Torpedo," 16 Jan. 2018 One of the five new nuclear weapons systems Russian President Vladimir Putin unveiled last week was a terrible new doomsday torpedo that can cross entire oceans to deliver a multi-megaton punch. Kyle Mizokami, Popular Mechanics, "How Russia’s New Doomsday Torpedo Works," 7 Mar. 2018 Ian Sample at The Guardian reports that for very small black holes, that radiation would eventually lead to a massive explosion, releasing 1 million megatons of energy. Jason Daley, Smithsonian, "Stephen Hawking, the Expansive Cosmologist Who Shone Light On the Universe, Has Died at 76," 14 Mar. 2018

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

1952, in the meaning defined above

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Last Updated

12 Dec 2018

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Time Traveler for megaton

The first known use of megaton was in 1952

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English Language Learners Definition of megaton

: an explosive force that is equal to one million tons of TNT

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Rhyming Dictionary: Words that rhyme with megaton

Spanish Central: Translation of megaton Encyclopedia article about megaton

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the figure or shape of a crescent moon

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