sat·​el·​lite | \ ˈsa-tə-ˌlīt How to pronounce satellite (audio) \

Definition of satellite

1a : a celestial body orbiting another of larger size
b : a manufactured object or vehicle intended to orbit the earth, the moon, or another celestial body
2 : someone or something attendant, subordinate, or dependent especially : a country politically and economically dominated or controlled by another more powerful country
3 : a usually independent urban community situated near but not immediately adjacent to a large city
5 : a hired agent or obsequious follower : minion, sycophant

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Other Words from satellite

satellite adjective

Examples of satellite in a Sentence

Satellites help meteorologists predict the weather. Images of the planet are sent by satellite.
Recent Examples on the Web Go with your cable or satellite provider login information. oregonlive, "Club America 3, Portland Timbers 1 - Final: Video highlights, live updates recap," 5 May 2021 Our satellite will move into Earth’s dark central umbral shadow for just mere 15 minutes, briefly turning the lunar surface a reddish-copper color, though only for those in western parts of North America. Jamie Carter, Forbes, "Eid 2021: ‘Shawwal Moon’ Will End Ramadan And Set Up ‘Blood Moon’ And ‘Ring Of Fire’ Solar Eclipse," 5 May 2021 To reconstruct those early travelers’ potential paths, researchers assembled the first detailed topographic map of Sahul—including past coastal lands now underwater—from satellite, aerial, and undersea mapping data. David Malakoff, Science | AAAS, "Ancient Australian ‘superhighways’ suggested by massive supercomputing study," 4 May 2021 The special will also be available on demand to subscribers via cable/satellite systems, CNNgo platforms and CNN mobile apps. Melissa Macaya, CNN, "Biden to deliver first joint address to Congress," 28 Apr. 2021 Meanwhile, Seth is home alone when his TV satellite stops working. Olivia-anne Cleary, Vulture, "Seth and Summer’s Breakups and Makeups, Ranked," 27 Apr. 2021 Every satellite that dies in orbit, rocket component that is jettisoned, and wrench that is dropped during a spacewalk adds to the cloud of trash orbiting Earth. Mike Wehner, BGR, "The SpaceX Crew Dragon had a near-miss with space junk," 26 Apr. 2021 Small-satellite launch firm Virgin Orbit builds rockets in a facility on the sprawling lot where McDonnell Douglas Corp., and later Boeing Co., once built C-17 cargo planes. Samantha Masunaga, Los Angeles Times, "SpaceX strikes deal with Port of Long Beach (for real this time, mayor says)," 26 Apr. 2021 Its satellite Global Positioning System became fully operational. David Hambling, Popular Mechanics, "The U.S. Navy’s New Unhackable GPS Alternative: The Stars," 25 Apr. 2021

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

circa 1520, in the meaning defined at sense 5

History and Etymology for satellite

Middle French, from Latin satellit-, satelles attendant

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Time Traveler for satellite

Time Traveler

The first known use of satellite was circa 1520

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Statistics for satellite

Last Updated

9 May 2021

Cite this Entry

“Satellite.” Dictionary, Merriam-Webster, Accessed 12 May. 2021.

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More Definitions for satellite



English Language Learners Definition of satellite

: an object (such as a moon) that moves around a much larger planet
: a machine that is sent into space and that moves around the earth, moon, sun, or a planet
: a country, organization, etc., that is controlled by a larger and more powerful country, organization, etc.


sat·​el·​lite | \ ˈsa-tə-ˌlīt How to pronounce satellite (audio) \

Kids Definition of satellite

1 : a smaller body that revolves around a planet
2 : an object or vehicle sent out from the earth to revolve around the earth, moon, sun, or a planet


sat·​el·​lite | \ ˈsat-ᵊl-ˌīt How to pronounce satellite (audio) \

Medical Definition of satellite

1 : a short segment separated from the main body of a chromosome by a constriction

called also trabant

2 : the secondary or later member of a chain of gregarines
3 : a bodily structure lying near or associated with another (as a vein accompanying an artery)
4 : a smaller lesion accompanying a main one and situated nearby
5 : a spectral line of low intensity having a frequency close to that of another stronger line to which it is closely related (as by having a common energy level)

Other Words from satellite

satellite adjective

Comments on satellite

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