Definition of ballistic in English:



  • 1Relating to projectiles or their flight.

    • ‘It allows us to play what if games with internal ballistic calculations for pressure and velocity.’
    • ‘This application will also calculate ballistic coefficient and maximum point blank range.’
    • ‘Mounted onto a stock with the addition of a winch, ratchet apparatus, and trigger mechanism, much further distances and much greater ballistic forces were achieved.’
    • ‘This complete loss of memory after 0.1 ps reduces the amount of ballistic motion of atoms inside a void.’
    • ‘The vehicle system is a turreted, armored, all-wheel drive vehicle that provides increased ballistic and land mine protection.’
  • 2Moving under the force of gravity only.

    • ‘Counterproliferation operations will need to focus on ballistic and cruise missiles and on conventional WMDs.’
    • ‘Adversaries could also launch both theater ballistic and cruise missiles to arrive simultaneously at the designated target.’
    • ‘Most of a spacecraft's flight is ballistic, that is, it is not powered but is pulled by gravity, with engines needed for course corrections.’
    • ‘Mortars are ballistic weapons that have projectile trajectories undistorted by rocket engine or guidance system.’
    • ‘At that point the fuel to the rocket was cut off and the missile coasted along its ballistic trajectory to the target.’


Late 18th century: from ballista + -ic.