sat·el·lite | \ˈsa-tə-ˌlīt \

Definition of satellite 

1 : a hired agent or obsequious follower : minion, sycophant

2a : 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

3 : someone or something attendant, subordinate, or dependent especially : a country politically and economically dominated or controlled by another more powerful country

4 : a usually independent urban community situated near but not immediately adjacent to a large city

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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

Six days later, the Fermi team reported the satellite had found that a blazar, known as TXS 0506+056 and just 0.1° away from the neutrino track suggested by IceCube, was especially bright, having started flaring a few months earlier. Daniel Clery, Science | AAAS, "Ghostly particle caught in polar ice ushers in new way to look at the universe," 12 July 2018 The space agency has put the satellite into a form of hibernation until August 2, when there’s time booked on the Deep Space Network—a global array of receivers for space missions—to download data from its 18th observational mission. Glenn Fleishman, Fortune, "In Space, Nobody Can Hear You Stream: Kepler Telescope to Send NASA Its Last Images," 7 July 2018 How far has the technology of satellites come since then? Sarah Scoles, WIRED, "Never Prebook Your Return Flight From a Rocket Launch," 6 July 2018 Lunar eclipses occur on full moons when the celestial satellite illuminates all that exists within the darkness. Aliza Kelly Faragher, Allure, "What July's Sagittarius Horoscope Means for You," 29 June 2018 Ice sheets in Greenland and West Antarctica have also shriveled, melting about 455 billion tons of ice into water, according to the NASA satellite. Fox News, "NASA's chilling 30-year-old warning," 19 June 2018 Ice sheets in Greenland and West Antarctica have also shriveled, melting about 455 billion tons of ice into water, according to the NASA satellite. Seth Borenstein And Nicky Forster,, "Warned 30 years ago, global warming 'is in our living room'," 18 June 2018 Researchers running the scientific instrument and communications satellite called Mars Reconnaissance Orbiter captured images of an ancient lakebed on the red planet, in the region called Eridania basin. Shannon Stirone, WIRED, "Space Photos of the Week: Mars Has Spiders in the Springtime," 14 July 2018 The Sheriff's Office recommends hikers use satellite technology, which can deliver signals in areas where cell phone service is not available. Arizona Republic, azcentral, "GPS device leads rescue team to missing father, son in Coconino National Forest," 13 July 2018

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 1548, in the meaning defined at sense 1

History and Etymology for satellite

Middle French, from Latin satellit-, satelles attendant

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Phrases Related to satellite

satellite imagery

Statistics for satellite

Last Updated

16 Oct 2018

Look-up Popularity

Time Traveler for satellite

The first known use of satellite was circa 1548

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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 \

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 \

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

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Comments on satellite

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


a state of commotion or excitement

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