range finder


Definition of range finder

1 : an instrument used in gunnery to determine the distance of a target
2 : a surveying instrument (such as a transit) for determining quickly the distances, bearings, and elevations of distant objects
3 : a usually built-in adjustable optical device for focusing a camera that automatically indicates the correct focus (as when two parts of a split image are brought together)

Examples of range finder in a Sentence

Recent Examples on the Web Other marine-binocular features might include a range finder or even stabilization technology, which makes higher-power glass (say above 7x magnification) more functional in the confines of a rocking boat. The Editors, Outdoor Life, "Three Features You Need in a Marine Binocular," 21 Oct. 2019 When shopping for range finders for rifle hunting, maximum range of measurement becomes more critical. The Editors, Field & Stream, "Three Features to Consider in Your Next Rangefinder," 27 Sep. 2019 Additionally, WildCat’s laser range finders gauge its distance above the ground. David Wilson, Popular Mechanics, "Machine Beats Man," 16 Oct. 2019 The cameras were trained at the road and activated by an array of ambient light sensors, range finders, and remote speedometers. Russell Brandom, The Verge, "New Homeland Security system will bring facial recognition to land borders this summer," 5 June 2018 Major automakers—along with upstarts such as Tesla and Uber—are racing to put self-driving cars on the road, leading to advances in enabling technologies such as laser range finders known as lidars. Michael Belfiore, Scientific American, "Portable Laser Range Finder Enables Real-Time 3-D Mapping," 1 May 2017 Investigators also found body armor, range finders and a homemade gas mask. Adam Goldman And Jennifer Medina, New York Times, "Las Vegas Gunman Took Elaborate Steps to Hide His Tracks, New Documents Show," 12 Jan. 2018 Concentrated, unfiltered sunlight can damage your single lens reflex camera’s sensor and cause eye damage when viewed through the optics of a range finder camera. Wsj Roundup, WSJ, "A Viewer’s Guide to How, When and Where to Watch the Eclipse," 18 Aug. 2017

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

1872, in the meaning defined at sense 2

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Time Traveler for range finder

Time Traveler

The first known use of range finder was in 1872

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Last Updated

17 Jan 2021

Cite this Entry

“Range finder.” Merriam-Webster.com Dictionary, Merriam-Webster, https://www.merriam-webster.com/dictionary/range%20finder. Accessed 28 Jan. 2021.

More from Merriam-Webster on range finder

Britannica.com: Encyclopedia article about range finder

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