op·er·a·tion·al | \ˌä-pə-ˈrā-shnəl, -shə-nᵊl\

Definition of operational 

1 : of or relating to operation or to an operation the operational gap between planning and production

2 : of, relating to, or based on operations

3a : of, engaged in, or connected with execution of military or naval operations in campaign or battle

b : ready for or in condition to undertake a destined function

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Other Words from operational

operationally adverb

Examples of operational in a Sentence

The new airport should be fully operational by next year. The computer network is now operational.

Recent Examples on the Web

In 2013, before the DBC prototype was operational, scientists from the lab worked with Chinese officials to manufacture a vaccine for an avian-flu strain. Laine Higgins, WSJ, "This Company Aims to Deliver DNA on Demand With Its Biological Fax Machine," 12 July 2018 Set to be constructed in two phases, the Foxconn plant, featuring more than a dozen buildings, should be operational by 2023, officials have said. Todd Shields, chicagotribune.com, "Lincolnshire joins Lake County opposition to Foxconn development in Wisconsin," 12 July 2018 Georgia Power projects both units will be operational by 2022, but that is two years beyond the previous deadline of 2020. Alex Soderstrom, ajc, "Lower Vogtle costs result in $25 credit for Georgia Power customers," 11 July 2018 The facility is expected to be operational by July 2019. Patrick Brennan, Cincinnati.com, "FC Cincinnati reveals training complex plans, stadium details coming Friday," 26 June 2018 In 2017, Geo won a contract from ICE for the Montgomery Processing Center in Conroe, Texas, a 1,000-bed detention center built by Geo that is expected to be operational in the fourth quarter of 2018, according to a securities filing. Marcia Heroux Pounds, Sun-Sentinel.com, "Boca-based Geo Group poised to profit from Trump order for illegal immigrant beds," 25 June 2018 Blue Origin, the space outfit of Amazon billionaire Jeff Bezos, made an impact on the Cape by building a 750,000-square-foot rocket manufacturing facility in Exploration Park that is meant to be fully operational by the end of the year. Joe Pappalardo, Popular Mechanics, "Cape Canaveral, Reinvigorated," 12 June 2018 Earlier this week, about half the network connections had been repaired, so the system was still not fully operational. Mará Rose Williams, kansascity, "Restoring K-State's fire-damaged Hale Library will take a long time," 6 June 2018 Built at a cost of 4.4 billion rand, MeerKAT will be incorporated into the complex Square Kilometre Array (SKA) instrument, which when fully operational in the late 2020s would be the world’s biggest and most powerful radio telescope. Wendell Roelf, The Christian Science Monitor, "South Africa's MeerKAT telescope will help uncover next space frontier," 13 July 2018

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

1885, in the meaning defined at sense 2

History and Etymology for operational

operation + -al entry 1

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Statistics for operational

Last Updated

3 Oct 2018

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Time Traveler for operational

The first known use of operational was in 1885

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English Language Learners Definition of operational

: ready for use : able to be used

: of or relating to the operation of a business or machine


op·er·a·tion·al | \ˌä-pə-ˈrā-shə-nᵊl \

Kids Definition of operational

: ready for use The new airport is now operational.


op·er·a·tion·al | \ˌä-pə-ˈrā-shə-nəl \

Legal Definition of operational 

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Comments on operational

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


evasion of direct action or statement

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