specific impulse

noun

: the thrust produced per unit rate of consumption of the propellant that is usually expressed in pounds of thrust per pound of propellant used per second and that is a measure of the efficiency of a rocket engine

Example Sentences

Recent Examples on the Web The higher the seconds of specific impulse the more economic and efficient the rocket. Amy Shira Teitel, Discover Magazine, 28 Mar. 2019 Dividing the impulse by the weight of the rocket gives the specific impulse. Rhett Allain, Wired, 25 Feb. 2022 Meanwhile, the Air Force will get data on measurements of specific impulse, or ISP, combustion stability, vibration and shock profiles, and range of inlet pressures and temperatures. Eric Berger, Ars Technica, 2 Sep. 2022 One way to describe the performance of a rocket is with the specific impulse. Rhett Allain, Wired, 25 Feb. 2022 This would be a monumental achievement given that the world-record specific impulse—held by NASA—is 542 seconds, and most operating orbital rockets have specific impulses around 300 seconds. Daniel Oberhaus, Ars Technica, 27 June 2020 This would be a monumental achievement given that the world-record specific impulse—held by NASA—is 542 seconds, and most operating orbital rockets have specific impulses around 300 seconds. Daniel Oberhaus, Ars Technica, 27 June 2020 This would be a monumental achievement given that the world-record specific impulse—held by NASA—is 542 seconds, and most operating orbital rockets have specific impulses around 300 seconds. Daniel Oberhaus, Ars Technica, 27 June 2020 This would be a monumental achievement given that the world-record specific impulse—held by NASA—is 542 seconds, and most operating orbital rockets have specific impulses around 300 seconds. Daniel Oberhaus, Ars Technica, 27 June 2020 See More

These example sentences are selected automatically from various online news sources to reflect current usage of the word 'specific impulse.' Views expressed in the examples do not represent the opinion of Merriam-Webster or its editors. Send us feedback.

Word History

First Known Use

1947, in the meaning defined above

Time Traveler
The first known use of specific impulse was in 1947

Dictionary Entries Near specific impulse

Cite this Entry

“Specific impulse.” Merriam-Webster.com Dictionary, Merriam-Webster, https://www.merriam-webster.com/dictionary/specific%20impulse. Accessed 28 Jan. 2023.

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