orbiter

noun
or·​bit·​er | \ ˈȯr-bə-tər How to pronounce orbiter (audio) \

Definition of orbiter

: one that orbits: such as
a : a spacecraft designed to orbit a celestial body without landing on its surface

Examples of orbiter in a Sentence

Recent Examples on the Web

The orbiter was the third to launch for NASA following Space Shuttle Columbia and Challenger. Richard Tribou, orlandosentinel.com, "Space Shuttle Discovery launched for the first time on this day," 30 Aug. 2019 Until then, the lander, rover, and orbiter are all bundled together in orbit around the Moon. Loren Grush, The Verge, "India’s lunar mission enters the Moon’s orbit ahead of landing attempt," 20 Aug. 2019 And six more Luna missions—orbiters and landers—are intended to follow before the end of the decade. The Economist, "Is it time to go back to the Moon?," 18 July 2019 In the 1970s two Soviet lunar orbiters discovered that ions also existed in the moon’s ultra-thin exosphere, and scientists have been trying to explain this observation ever since. Daniel Oberhaus, WIRED, "Lunar Mysteries That Science Still Needs to Solve," 16 July 2019 The maps of the Moon that were created at the Lunar and Planetary Laboratory have long since been surpassed, and those best-ever photographs of the lunar surface aren’t nearly as good as those of taken by more recent orbiters. Timothy Swindle, The Conversation, "Mapping the Moon for Apollo," 15 July 2019 Launched in 1984, the Discovery has completed 30 successful missions, the most of any other NASA orbiter, the agency says. Currie Engel, Time, "8 Places You Can Visit to Celebrate Apollo 11's 50th Anniversary This Week," 15 July 2019 Chandrayaan-2 will have a lunar orbiter, lander and a rover. Fox News, "India to land rover on Moon in global space race," 13 July 2019 The rotocopter comes after years of studying alternative concepts for studying Titan, such as a conventional orbiter or lander, a hot-air balloon and even a boat. David W. Brown, New York Times, "NASA Announces New Dragonfly Drone Mission to Explore Titan," 27 June 2019

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

1951, in the meaning defined above

History and Etymology for orbiter

orbit entry 3 + -er entry 2

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Statistics for orbiter

Last Updated

7 Sep 2019

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Time Traveler for orbiter

The first known use of orbiter was in 1951

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More Definitions for orbiter

orbiter

noun

English Language Learners Definition of orbiter

: a vehicle or device that travels around a planet or moon in space

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