stic·​tion ˈstik-shən How to pronounce stiction (audio)
: the force required to cause one body in contact with another to begin to move

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Stiction has been a part of the English language since at least 1946, when it appeared in a journal of aeronautics. While stiction refers to the force needed to get an object to move from a position at rest, it is not related to the verb stick. The word is a blend word formed from the st- of static ("of or relating to bodies at rest") and the -iction of friction ("the force that resists relative motion between two bodies in contact"). So, basically, it means "static friction" (or to put it another way, "stationary friction").

Examples of stiction in a Sentence

Recent Examples on the Web Noodle stiction occurs as linear stage moves down the beaker. Jennifer Ouellette, Ars Technica, 16 Mar. 2022 Our car's stock 205/55ZR-16 tires mustered 0.87 g of stiction on the skidpad. Frank Markus, Car and Driver, 1 June 2020

These examples are programmatically compiled from various online sources to illustrate current usage of the word 'stiction.' Any opinions expressed in the examples do not represent those of Merriam-Webster or its editors. Send us feedback about these examples.

Word History


static + friction

First Known Use

1946, in the meaning defined above

Time Traveler
The first known use of stiction was in 1946


Dictionary Entries Near stiction

Cite this Entry

“Stiction.” Dictionary, Merriam-Webster, Accessed 2 Mar. 2024.

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