Longman Dictionary of Contemporary English
The Collaborative International Dictionary
Missile \Mis"sile\, n. [L. missile.]
A weapon thrown or projected or intended to be projected, as a lance, an arrow, or a bullet.
A rocket-propelled device designed to fly through the air and deliver a warhead of explosive materials to a target.
Note: Numerous types of rocket-propelled missile are now used in modern warfare. Some types with names indicating their range or function are: antiaircraft missile; ballistic missile; cruise missile; antiballistic missile missile; air-to-air missile; air-to-ground missile; guided missile; intercontinental ballistic missile (IBM); intermediate range ballistic missile (IRBM); surface-to-air missile.
n. A winged missile, designed for a guided flight at low altitudes, as opposed to a ballistic missile.
n. an unmanned aircraft that is a self-contained bomb
A cruise missile is a guided missile used against terrestrial targets that remains in the atmosphere and flies the major portion of its flight path at approximately constant speed. Cruise missiles are designed to deliver a large warhead over long distances with high accuracy, that is, small circular error probability. Modern cruise missiles are capable of travelling at supersonic or high subsonic speeds, are self-navigating, and are able to fly on a non- ballistic, extremely low-altitude trajectory. They are distinct from unmanned aerial vehicles (UAV) in several ways: the cruise missile is a single use weapon which is always sacrificed in the mission; it is not intended to provide aerial reconnaissance; and the warhead is integrated directly into the hull of the vehicle and cannot be separated. There is considerable overlap between cruise missiles and anti-ship missiles.
The first cruise missiles to be deployed were the Nazi German V-1 flying bomb of World War II. Advances in transistor and computer technology have contributed to self-correcting avionic and aeronautical designs that allow missiles to be guided in flight, as opposed to only at launch. These advances developed into guided missiles and guided bombs, and later into the modern cruise missile.
Usage examples of "cruise missile".
We have several options in this regard, ranging from ballistic missile attacks, to cruise missile attacks, to stealth bomber attacks, to conventional attacks with B1-B bombers.
Not long ago, a cruise missile from the Galveston had helped sink the Indian carrier Viraat, part of an action fought to stop the Indo-Pakistani war from going nuclear.
Instead of having a cruise missile or stealth bomber take out the threats from standoff range followed by Bones with fighter cover, we drive a couple of Bones through a gauntlet of fighters and SAMs.
How about launch tubes for the new cruise missile they're developing?
A possible submarine to seaward-every sub contact was a possible cruise missile sub-was all the Commodore needed to go to full speed.
Those raids would include cruise missile launches from the Navy and from Air force B1-B Lancers, followed by the launching of strike packages from the USS Carl Vinson in the Mediterranean and from the Izmir Air Base.
At the same time the laser system was being developed to neutralize Russian offensive satellites, we were also able to create a missile that was sort of a combination between an ICBM and a Cruise missile, long range and low level.
Four more of the cruise missile fell to SAMs, and a fifth lost power and slammed into the cliff face at Laolao Kattan.
Some of the armored vehicles had been destroyed not from a nuclear blast but by regular antitank or RPG rounds or by the Wolverine cruise missile's Sensor-Fuzed Weapon rounds blowing through the weaker upper hull.