strato·​sphere | \ ˈstra-tə-ˌsfir How to pronounce stratosphere (audio) \

Definition of stratosphere

1 : the part of the earth's atmosphere which extends from the top of the troposphere to about 30 miles (50 kilometers) above the surface and in which temperature increases gradually to about 32° F (0° C) and clouds rarely form
2 : a very high or the highest region on or as if on a graded scale construction costs in the stratosphere the celebrity stratosphere

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Other Words from stratosphere

stratospheric \ ˌstra-​tə-​ˈsfir-​ik How to pronounce stratosphere (audio) , -​ˈsfer-​ \ adjective
stratospherically \ ˌstra-​tə-​ˈsfir-​i-​k(ə-​)lē , -​ˈsfer-​ \ adverb

Did you know?

The stratosphere (strato- simply means "layer" or "level") lies above the earth's weather and mostly changes very little. It contains the ozone layer, which shields us from the sun's ultraviolet radiation except where it's been harmed by manmade chemicals. The levels of the atmosphere are marked particularly by their temperatures; stratospheric temperatures rise only to around 32°—very moderate considering that temperatures in the troposphere below may descend to about -70° and those in the ionosphere above may rise to 1000°.

Examples of stratosphere in a Sentence

Recent Examples on the Web Iris Van Herpen literally sent couture into the stratosphere by collaborating with Domitille Kiger, the French female world-champion skydiver, who wore Van Herpen’s clothing during an aerial performance. Sam Sussman, Vogue, 10 July 2021 It’s this dynamic, multiplied over, and over, and over again, that has catapulted what was once a small regional bank into the stratosphere. Lucinda Shen, Fortune, 8 July 2021 Thiel was able to launch his Roth into the stratosphere through a complicated strategy involving the purchase of nonpublic stock at bargain prices — the kind of deal most people can’t access. Nadia Sussman, ProPublica, 1 July 2021 Platforms like TikTok and Instagram can propel a brand into the stratosphere overnight. Christine Haas, Forbes, 29 June 2021 The Tahoe real estate market has been supercharged throughout the pandemic, with migration especially from the Bay Area driving prices into the stratosphere. Danielle Echeverria, San Francisco Chronicle, 23 June 2021 Unlike the aircraft-like capsule of the other commercial space firms, Neptune One will be more like a lounge, complete with WiFi, toilet and bar, that floats at 12 mph into the stratosphere. Michael Verdon, Robb Report, 23 June 2021 After years of hard work, his hustle started paying dividends: Lil Baby’s 2018 debut album Harder Than Ever went platinum and launched the artist into the stratosphere. Ted Brown, Billboard, 22 June 2021 It’s this business model which has rocketed Google (and Facebook) into the stratosphere and spawned the vast app industry. Zak Doffman, Forbes, 12 June 2021

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

1908, in the meaning defined at sense 1

History and Etymology for stratosphere

borrowed from French stratosphère, probably from stratus stratus (from the zone's layer-like character, compared to stratus clouds) + -o- -o- + -sphère -sphere

Note: The term was introduced, along with troposphère, by the French meteorologist Léon Tesserenc de Bort (1855-1913). See note at troposphere.

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Time Traveler for stratosphere

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The first known use of stratosphere was in 1908

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Last Updated

22 Jul 2021

Cite this Entry

“Stratosphere.” Dictionary, Merriam-Webster, Accessed 24 Jul. 2021.

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More Definitions for stratosphere


strato·​sphere | \ ˈstra-tə-ˌsfir How to pronounce stratosphere (audio) \

Kids Definition of stratosphere

: an upper portion of the atmosphere extending from about 6 miles (10 kilometers) to 30 miles (50 kilometers) upward where temperature changes little and clouds rarely form

More from Merriam-Webster on stratosphere

Nglish: Translation of stratosphere for Spanish Speakers Encyclopedia article about stratosphere


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