reg·​o·​lith | \ ˈre-gə-ˌlith How to pronounce regolith (audio) \

Definition of regolith

: unconsolidated residual or transported material that overlies the solid rock on the earth, moon, or a planet

Examples of regolith in a Sentence

Recent Examples on the Web If all goes well, the craft will lower its 11-foot robotic arm to the surface of the 1,600-foot-wide asteroid for a few seconds in 2020 to suck up a sample of regolith (the dust and pebbles believed to make up the asteroid). NBC News, 12 Aug. 2021 If people start rejiggering the atmosphere and thawing the regolith, so much the worse. Anna Russel, The New Yorker, 3 Aug. 2021 And most importantly, the 66-pound suite of scientific instruments will perform chemical and spectral analysis of the surrounding regolith with the primary goal of finding lunar water. Anatoly Zak, Popular Mechanics, 18 July 2021 For instance, which is more suitable for digging up lunar regolith: a tunnel-boring machine, or a process that could promote shallow ditch construction? Caroline Delbert, Popular Mechanics, 16 June 2021 The European Space Agency, which is working with NASA on lunar exploration, awarded a contract to Space Applications Services to transform lunar regolith into oxygen. Elizabeth Howell, Forbes, 19 May 2021 As the arm continued downward another half meter through the yielding surface, more regolith might have been jammed in. Chris Wright, Wired, 16 Dec. 2020 The regolith would be baked in a container with hydrogen gas, producing water vapor that can be split into its components of oxygen and hydrogen. Elizabeth Howell, Forbes, 19 May 2021 Thanga and his colleagues have proposed sending miniature hopping and flying robots into the lunar lava tubes to collect samples of regolith, or loose rock and dirt. Courtney Linder, Popular Mechanics, 12 Mar. 2021

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

1897, in the meaning defined above

History and Etymology for regolith

Greek rhēgos blanket + English -lith; akin to Greek rhezein to dye — more at raga

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The first known use of regolith was in 1897

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Last Updated

2 Sep 2021

Cite this Entry

“Regolith.” Dictionary, Merriam-Webster, Accessed 18 Oct. 2021.

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