quantum leap

plural quantum leaps

Definition of quantum leap

: an abrupt change, sudden increase, or dramatic advance

Note: Quantum leap is rarely used in scientific contexts, but it originated as a synonym of quantum jump, which describes an abrupt transition (as of an electron, an atom, or a molecule) from one discrete energy state to another.

Examples of quantum leap in a Sentence

Prices have taken a quantum leap upward. The new drug is a quantum leap in the fight against cancer.
Recent Examples on the Web The suggestions follow a recent quantum leap in corporate interest in face recognition legislation. Tom Simonite, Wired, "Congress Is Eyeing Face Recognition, and Companies Want a Say," 23 Nov. 2020 But technology is advancing faster than expected, and could be poised for a quantum leap. Jack Ewing, New York Times, "The Age of Electric Cars Is Dawning Ahead of Schedule," 20 Sep. 2020 What’s more, Wills is making the quantum leap from right tackle at Alabama to left tackle in the pros. Mary Kay Cabot, cleveland, "Joe Thomas on Browns LT Jedrick Wills Jr.: ‘My expectations are still super high; let’s be patient’," 3 Sep. 2020 Add the dangerous Melvin Gordon to a proven offensive system and Lock could make a quantum leap. USA TODAY, "All-breakout 2020 fantasy football team led by Buffalo Bills RB Devin Singletary," 24 Aug. 2020 In recent months, the group has rapidly expanded its food delivery, financial services businesses, and other businesses and has seen a quantum leap to cashless. Grady Mcgregor, Fortune, "In the U.S. presidential election, how will China vote?," 13 Aug. 2020 Either way, the findings could be a quantum leap for quantum physics. Ramin Skibba, Smithsonian Magazine, "A New Experiment Hopes to Solve Quantum Mechanics’ Biggest Mystery," 5 Feb. 2020 The Sears catalog changed everything and was a quantum leap in bathroom technology. Popular Science, "Nature’s best toilet paper substitutes," 28 Mar. 2020 Still, the idea that college athletes can be compensated for third-party endorsements represents a quantum leap for the NCAA — even though it was forced into this. Chuck Carlton, Dallas News, "NCAA’s stance on athlete compensation has taken a significant step forward — even if it had to be forced," 29 Apr. 2020

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

1956, in the meaning defined above

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Time Traveler for quantum leap

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The first known use of quantum leap was in 1956

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Last Updated

29 Nov 2020

Cite this Entry

“Quantum leap.” Merriam-Webster.com Dictionary, Merriam-Webster, https://www.merriam-webster.com/dictionary/quantum%20leap. Accessed 26 Jan. 2021.

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More Definitions for quantum leap

quantum leap


English Language Learners Definition of quantum leap

: a sudden large change, development, or improvement

More from Merriam-Webster on quantum leap

Thesaurus: All synonyms and antonyms for quantum leap

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