non·​nu·​cle·​ar | \ˌnän-ˈnü-klē-ər, -ˈnyü-, nonstandard -kyə-lər \

Definition of nonnuclear 

1 : not nuclear: such as

a : being a weapon whose destructive power is not derived from a nuclear reaction

b : not operated by, using, or produced by nuclear energy

c : not using or involving nuclear weapons

2 : not having nuclear weapons a nonnuclear country

Examples of nonnuclear in a Sentence

Recent Examples on the Web

There are plenty of nonnuclear options available — such as launching airstrikes to try to take out an adversary’s nuclear arsenal. Alex Ward, Vox, "This is exactly how a nuclear war would kill you," 19 Oct. 2018 Kim has no intention of going nonnuclear alone or going first. Jane Vaynman, Washington Post, "There are signs North Korea is still working on its nuclear program. Here’s why ‘denuclearization’ is so problematic.," 30 June 2018 Of particular note, diplomats say, any delay in granting inspectors access to nuclear or nonnuclear sites or modest expansion of Iran’s uranium production or nuclear research and development. Laurence Norman, WSJ, "Five Options for Iran After Trump’s Withdrawal From Nuclear Pact," 9 May 2018 In fact, across the entire world in the case of a super storm, a solar super storm, the EMP can be made by nature, by the sun, by a solar super storm or it can be made by man via nuclear weapon and it can be made by nonnuclear weapons as well. Fox News, "What threats face America's electrical grid?," 23 Apr. 2018 Let none of the congregation forget that this was the same man who, shortly after taking office, dropped the largest nonnuclear bomb on Afghanistan. Stephen A. Crockett Jr., The Root, "Trump to Make Decision on Syria Soon. It Looks Like We ’Bout to Go to War, Y’all," 9 Apr. 2018 American officials said Europe has recently begun to move on some of the other, nonnuclear, issues of concern in Washington. Felicia Schwartz, WSJ, "U.S.-European Division Clouds Effort to Salvage Iran Nuclear Deal," 22 Mar. 2018 No nonnuclear power in the world is nearer to a nuclear capacity than Japan. Walter Russell Mead, WSJ, "Does Trump Want a Nuclear Japan?," 4 Sep. 2017 October 1997President Bill Clinton certifies that China is not exporting nuclear technology to nonnuclear nations. Richard Stone, Science | AAAS, "U.S.-China mission rushes bomb-grade nuclear fuel out of Africa," 31 Aug. 2017

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

1953, in the meaning defined at sense 1

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Last Updated

15 Nov 2018

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The first known use of nonnuclear was in 1953

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a knickknack or trinket

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