pro·pel·ler | \ prə-ˈpe-lər \
variants: or less commonly propellor

Definition of propeller 

: one that propels especially : a device that consists of a central hub with radiating blades placed and twisted so that each forms part of a helical surface and that is used to propel a vehicle (such as a ship or airplane)

Examples of propeller in a Sentence

Recent Examples on the Web

But almost everything that businesses make—from phone cases to propellers to drills—lies between these bookends of tchotchkes and jet-engines, and is often made of metal or composites of metals and other materials. Jason Pontin, WIRED, "3D Printing Is the Future of Factories (for Real This Time)," 11 July 2018 Engines produce thrust by moving air through a nozzle or propellers. Joshua Brustein,, "Boeing asked for quiet jet packs but got a bunch of air motorcycles," 14 June 2018 The vehicles will need to travel up to 100 kilometers on a single battery charge and come equipped with four sets of electric-powered propellers dedicated solely to takeoff and landing. Larry Greenemeier, Scientific American, "Here's What's Needed for Self-Flying Taxis and Delivery Drones to Really Take Off," 15 May 2018 Bird calls are replaced, in due course, by the drone of airplane propellers; wagon wheels and rattling chains transform into trucks and tanks. Charles Desmarais, San Francisco Chronicle, "Janet Cardiff, George Bures Miller bring ‘Forest’ sounds to UC Santa Cruz," 17 Apr. 2018 The drone arrives overhead with a roar, hovers for a moment, then lowers itself towards the green circle like a mantis, three sets of propellers churning the air into whorls of straw and dust. The Economist, "The world's first commercial drone-delivery service takes flight," 9 June 2018 Nor did anything feel as worthwhile as the sight of those propellers cutting into the horizon led me to imagine. Steven Strom, Ars Technica, "State of Decay 2 review: Shambling toward nothing," 22 May 2018 Shotgun shells that fire nets to snare the propellers work only at close range. Alexander George, Popular Mechanics, "Stopping Killer Drone Swarms Before They Kill Us," 5 July 2018 The propellers make the aircraft’s engines less susceptible to debris flying in and causing operational problems for the engines. Kris Osborn, Fox News, "Massive overhaul to keep Air Force C-130 flying for 80 years into 2030s," 25 June 2018

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

1780, in the meaning defined above

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Statistics for propeller

Last Updated

19 Sep 2018

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Time Traveler for propeller

The first known use of propeller was in 1780

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More Definitions for propeller



English Language Learners Definition of propeller

: a device with two or more blades that turn quickly and cause a ship or aircraft to move


pro·pel·ler | \ prə-ˈpe-lər \

Kids Definition of propeller

: a device having a hub fitted with blades that is made to turn rapidly by an engine and that causes a ship, power boat, or airplane to move

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Comments on propeller

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


occurring twice a year or every two years

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