Definition of ejecta in English:


plural noun

Astronomy Geology
  • often treated as singular Material that is forced or thrown out, especially as a result of volcanic eruption, meteoritic impact, or stellar explosion.

    • ‘You can also see the ejecta blanket, material that has been tossed out’ of the crater.’
    • ‘This could account for the finer ash layers in the quarry sequence being dominated by T2 ejecta.’
    • ‘Many craters are characterized by large lava-flow-like features that may represent molten ejecta flowing outward from the crater after the impact.’
    • ‘The ejecta are still moving rapidly, however, and quickly sweep up surrounding matter to form a shell that slows down as mass gets accumulated, an action similar to that of a snowplow.’
    • ‘Behind the nucleus, a broad fan of impact ejecta, backlit by the Sun, spreads out into space.’
    • ‘Fresh impact craters are surrounded by fluidized ejecta patterns, likely produced by impact into subsurface water and ice.’
    • ‘From the impact ejecta volume, he calculated a crater size of around 150 to 200 meters.’
    • ‘Their discovery of shocked quartz grains in a sandy layer in a Georgia kaolin mine documents the scatter of ejecta from the Chesapeake impact site.’
    • ‘Impact ejecta deposits show a non-linear decrease in thickness with radial distance from the centre of the source crater.’
    • ‘The anomalous platinum group element geochemistry of the ejecta horizon suggests that the impactor was an asteroid.’
    • ‘Melosh et al. proposed that wildfires were ignited by the thermal energy radiated by re-entering ejecta following the asteroid impact.’
    • ‘The larger masses of molten glass remained near the effusive center; these were slower to solidify and commonly became strange agglomerations where bombarded by the rain of smaller ejecta.’
    • ‘The stellar ejecta from the explosion initially trail behind the shock wave.’


Late 19th century: from Latin, ‘things thrown out’, neuter plural of ejectus ‘thrown out’, from eicere (see eject).