Main definitions of plane in English

: plane1plane2plane3plane4

plane1

noun

  • 1A flat surface on which a straight line joining any two points on it would wholly lie:

    ‘the horizontal plane’
    • ‘This just means that we can focus on the surfaces, lines, and planes and ignore the fact that they are physical objects.’
    • ‘Finish surfaces to a true plane, to correct line and level, with all angles and corners to a right angle unless specified otherwise, and with walls and reveals plumb and square.’
    • ‘Start with a smooth solid of revolution whose cross sections by horizontal planes perpendicular to the rotation axis are circular rings.’
    • ‘What is the path of an object dragged along a horizontal plane by a string of constant length when the end of the string not joined to the object moves along a straight line in the plane?’
    • ‘The style was mathematical in its use of columns in straight lines, and flat planes.’
    • ‘The distance between images taken along the optical z-axis and the number of images projected into a single plane is indicated.’
    • ‘The parabola results when the plane is parallel to a generating line of the cone.’
    • ‘In a horizontal plane, a square has an upside and a downside.’
    • ‘He then considered the problem of when the geodesics on a surface could be represented as straight lines on the plane.’
    • ‘Fracture is when a mineral does not break along smooth planes, rather along irregular surfaces.’
    • ‘It's a flat plane of blue today, barely brighter than the gray sky over the industrial cranes at water's edge.’
    flat surface, level surface
    View synonyms
    1. 1.1 An imaginary flat surface through or joining material objects:
      ‘the planets orbit the sun in roughly the same plane’
      • ‘One performance limitation: The magnetic antenna can only receive information if it is roughly on the same plane.’
      • ‘The current is computed from the number of ions that pass through an imaginary plane near the end of the channel during a simulation period.’
      • ‘Be sure your arms stay in line with your shoulders and in a vertical plane (straight up in the air).’
      • ‘It might be that one of the sticks bends in the plane perpendicular to the picture, but we can't see that.’
      • ‘To prove our theorem on the sphere, move the figure by a rotation so that P is at the south pole, then project onto the plane.’
      • ‘Molecules and complexes can have more than just two planes of symmetry.’
      • ‘This is achieved by placing imaginary planes at the mouths of a channel that separates the pore region from the bulk water.’
      • ‘His image of the plane, the straight line that went from the ball up through the shoulders and beyond, is too upright.’
      • ‘Lipid positions in the plane of the membrane are denoted schematically as ovals.’
      • ‘We describe an experimental approach for studying ligand-receptor interactions in the plane of the membrane.’
      • ‘He gave a lemma investigating the possibility of exhibiting pairs of lines in the plane which are simultaneously non-parallel and non-intersecting.’
      • ‘Like your triceps, you usually work your biceps through a semicircular plane, so training them on a straight plane can be a welcome change.’
      • ‘All the planets in the solar system orbit the Sun in roughly the same plane, but each is a different distance away from the Sun and moves at its own pace.’
      • ‘The two orthogonal nodal planes separating these quadrants represent the fault plane and an imaginary plane called the auxiliary plane.’
      • ‘After ligand binding, the subsequent interactions take place in the plane of the membrane.’
      • ‘Shifting planes of various materials and degrees of opacity create spaces that expand and contract as needed.’
    2. 1.2 A flat or level surface of a material object:
      ‘the plane of his forehead’
      • ‘Rather, they tend to develop in the many nooks and crannies formed where roof planes intersect, or where roofs abut walls.’
      • ‘Angular planes of corrugated steel extend out to frame the entrance and engage with the public thoroughfare.’
      • ‘Where possible, collections of up to 30 specimens from a single bed or bedding plane have been examined.’
      • ‘Second, for the kinetic behavior, we have assumed that the diffusion in the plane of the surface is much faster than the motion perpendicular to it.’
      • ‘Substances that are confined to the lipid matrix will move along the plane of the bilayer.’
      • ‘Optical sections were taken and projected into a single plane.’
      • ‘All of them are layered materials containing planes of copper and oxygen atoms.’
      • ‘Set against the mass of textured stone, the thin man-made planes of a rusted steel door and rusty faceted piling are peculiarly resonant.’
      • ‘Expansion in the plane of the bilayer would be consistent with the responses of recombinant Shaker to stretch.’
      • ‘Looking around as I got to my feet, I found myself in a relatively small village set on a flat plane of ground.’
      • ‘The same detail is found in the rest of the house, anywhere planes or materials intersect.’
      • ‘When the strike-off operation is performed well, the surface plane of the concrete is flat with few ups and downs to be corrected with a bull float.’
      • ‘Enliven the dull gray planes of a weather-beaten deck by adding subtle, colorful stripes.’
      • ‘The gentle curves of his childhood face weren't banished by age, but they hid themselves in the smooth planes of his cheeks.’
      • ‘These materials contain planes in which copper and oxygen atoms are chemically bonded to each other.’
      • ‘There were also thin smears of the viscous material along some of the fault planes.’
      • ‘Folded planes and porous, exterior materials like perforated metal are the norm these days.’
      • ‘The wood and stainless steel planes pass through the space without touching.’
      • ‘The inner structural walls are composed of architectural concrete that supports massive, projecting roof planes.’
      • ‘The shell forms I envision have no straight lines and flat planes; this makes them reproducible by hot-air balloon manufacturers.’
      • ‘Moreover, the sharp upward tilt of the platform's surface jars against the plane of the table.’
      • ‘To add a greater degree of difficulty, the students also had to break the plane of the surface on which they were working.’
    3. 1.3 A flat surface producing lift by the action of air or water over and under it.
  • 2A level of existence, thought, or development:

    ‘everything is connected on the spiritual plane’
    • ‘This is true only on a high plane of metaphysical logic, but it is true.’
    • ‘By then, the crowd had migrated into a higher plane of metal-rock-consciousness.’
    • ‘On the astral plane, your imagination shapes everything.’
    • ‘There's definitely a trap in any spiritual path that can remove the seeker from the material plane.’
    • ‘When we speak of an angel, we are speaking of an entity that exists purely on a spiritual plane.’
    • ‘It means that you live in one place, but exist in another esoteric, imaginary plane, unshackled by fact or memory.’
    • ‘When the dancer believes in this, she not only transports herself to a higher plane of consciousness but also takes her audience with her.’
    • ‘Indeed, he has moved the sport on to a new plane of excellence.’
    • ‘Jack had a little posse made up of rich kids who thought being rich placed you on a higher plane of existence than the rest of the world.’
    • ‘Yet not to do so is to remove historical events from the plane of analysis and to place it at the level of religious remembrance.’
    • ‘Man's destiny was to transcend his animal nature on a spiritual plane.’
    • ‘Thus, in ancient art, any human action was on the plane of the heroic.’
    • ‘His work complements this project on a political plane by reading Marx and Lenin to develop an adequate political critique of Hegelianism.’
    • ‘It is as if she has already passed into a higher plane of existence and is recalling mortal limitations from the other side, as it were.’
    • ‘Stepping into this world was like stepping into a whole new plane of existence.’
    • ‘She explains her own spiritual lessons and how she went from a child-level to an adult-level in functioning on the spiritual plane.’
    • ‘Western medicine is the first and only system that reduces the health of the individual to the material plane.’
    • ‘Imagination is transformative not only on the human plane; it has a powerful effect on the divine scale as well.’
    • ‘This card is rooted more deeply in the material plane, connecting Tiphareth to Yesod.’
    • ‘It means the prophet has entered such a high plane of understanding that he or she is able to communicate with the Infinite.’
    level, stage, degree, standard, stratum
    View synonyms

adjective

  • 1[attributive] Completely level or flat:

    ‘a plane surface’
    • ‘I accomplished this by placing against the objective a piece of glass which was plane on one side and curved on the other, so as to be a portion of a cylinder of large diameter.’
    • ‘Each speaker was on a plane level with the listener's head and approximately 10 inches from the wall.’
    flat, level, horizontal, even, flush, levelled, true
    smooth, regular, uniform
    planar
    homaloidal
    View synonyms
    1. 1.1 Relating to only two-dimensional surfaces or magnitudes:
      ‘plane and solid geometry’
      • ‘He published a treatise on the analytic geometry of plane curves in 1756.’
      • ‘This work also contains the famous sine formula for plane triangles.’
      • ‘The decoration resembles a stalactite and consists of three-dimensional polygons, some with plane surfaces, and some with curved surfaces.’
      • ‘Three important papers on plane topology proved the topological invariance of the dimension of the square.’
      • ‘In 1888 Schroeter published on third-order plane curves and in 1890 he published his study on fourth-order space curves.’
      • ‘He invented the polar planimeter, a device for measuring areas enclosed by plane curves.’
      • ‘He divided his course into two parts, the first part being a general overview of mathematics while the second part was on the theory of plane algebraic curves.’
      • ‘He showed that the tangents drawn from a point to a plane curve of order m have their points of contact on a curve of order m - 1 which he called the polar of the point.’
      • ‘Axiomatized theories - such as Euclid's presentation of plane geometry - offer a compelling example of foundationalism in action.’
      • ‘It arose out of a desire to find the equation of a plane curve passing through a number of given points.’
      • ‘Different three-dimensional objects, oriented appropriately, have the same two-dimensional plane projection.’
      • ‘Earlier Aronhold had worked on plane curves and the problem of the nine points of inflection of the third order plane curve which had been discussed by Plücker some time before.’
      • ‘In 1862 he was awarded two-thirds of the Grand Prize of the Paris Academy for his work on fourth order plane curves.’
      • ‘In mechanics Archimedes discovered fundamental theorems concerning the centre of gravity of plane figures and solids.’
      • ‘He therefore added a preface of his own on applications of logarithms to both plane trigonometry and to spherical trigonometry.’
      • ‘When an element of plane division suggests to me the form of an animal, I immediately think of a volume.’
      • ‘The volumes of two solids of the same height bear a constant ratio if the areas of the plane sections at equal heights have the same ratio.’
      • ‘Among the subjects to which his principal papers related were plane and solid geometry, theory of numbers, and link motion.’
      • ‘His doctoral thesis is an important contribution to conformal mappings of multiply connected plane domains.’
      • ‘On one particular occasion, she challenged the group to solve a curious problem in plane geometry that she had recently encountered.’

verb

[NO OBJECT]
  • 1 (of a bird or an airborne object) soar without moving the wings; glide:

    ‘seagulls swooped and planed overhead’
    • ‘No life stirred except where, against the sky, buzzards planed and glided on motionless wings.’
    • ‘There comes a point, alas, when a baby bird, trying its wings, finds it has planed down off the roof, and can't get back up again.’
    soar, glide, float, drift, wheel
    View synonyms
    1. 1.1[no object] (of a boat, surfboard, etc.) skim over the surface of water as a result of lift produced by hydrodynamic means.
      • ‘Handboards allow a bodysurfer to plane higher out of the water, thereby increasing speed.’
      • ‘They keeled between the stumps in the still air, planing just above the water while Greg called out to the birds by name.’
      • ‘They and the other pilots send their 11-foot oars planing through the water with smooth, powerful strokes.’
      • ‘Even a slightly dirty bottom can keep your boat from planing or, on a displacement hull, can slow it down dramatically.’
      • ‘Suddenly instead of being in the water I'm planing and skipping on top of it.’
      • ‘They are these neat ski like things that go on his hands that allow him to plane across the water a lot easier.’
      • ‘Once the vessel started planing with a lower freeboard aft the fender would be low enough to bounce on the sea surface.’
      • ‘The BMT director said faster craft which planed along the surface of the water created less wake than slower boats which displaced a larger volume.’
      • ‘He stood in a slight crouch amidships, his knees bent just enough so that he could maintain balance as the boat planed along the waters, the hull bouncing and slapping down the waves passing underneath the bow.’
      • ‘We waded ashore, and the kid with the skiff gunned the outboard and planed back through the curious seals to the big boat, now once more enshrouded in the mist.’
      • ‘He said: ‘A 17-knot boat is highly likely to be a planing boat that skims across the water.’’
      • ‘But here, every time I'd get up to planing speed, the boat would invariably veer off course and stall.’
      skim, glide
      View synonyms

Origin

Early 17th century: from Latin planum flat surface, neuter of the adjective planus plain. The adjective was suggested by French plan(e) flat. The word was introduced to differentiate the geometrical senses, previously expressed by plain, from the latter's other meanings.

Pronunciation:

plane

/pleɪn/

Main definitions of plane in English

: plane1plane2plane3plane4

plane2

noun

  • An aeroplane:

    [as modifier] ‘a plane crash’
    • ‘The airline is known for having images of wildlife on the tails of its planes, and the airline has transferred that marketing effort.’
    • ‘The game icons are small animated models of infantry, tanks, fighter and bomber planes and an assortment of ships from subs through to aircraft carriers.’
    • ‘The single-engine plane crashed near Daly Waters, killing the pilot and all passengers.’
    • ‘As a freight aircraft, the plane continues to sell and sell, however.’
    • ‘Despite the gusting winds and hazardous visibility, the planes and helicopters kept flying.’
    • ‘As anyone who has witnessed the fighter planes and helicopters over the past few days has probably guessed, a major military exercise began around Scotland on Friday.’
    • ‘As police cordoned off part of the crash sites, firefighting planes and helicopters swooped overhead to battle a brush fire started by the crash.’
    • ‘Also the plane needed highly trained and skilled pilots - and a training period was essential to ensure that those men skilled in flying propeller driven planes got used to the vast differences of a jet plane.’
    • ‘At the moment the FAA suggests that airlines using these planes allow 180 lb for every clothed adult in winter including carry-on baggage.’
    • ‘Three people were hurt yesterday when a civilian plane crashed while taking off from an RAF airfield.’
    • ‘We had our fighter planes at several altitudes but met no enemy aircraft.’
    • ‘The plane crashed on the helicopter landing pad adjacent to the Pentagon.’
    • ‘Fighters, transport planes, bombers and helicopters will fill the skies over RAF Fairford in the run-up to the air show this weekend.’
    • ‘The same flight control radar systems are used in helicopters, low-flying private planes, light aircraft and stealth bombers.’
    • ‘The SA government yesterday announced it is sending five helicopters, two transport planes and a Casa aircraft to help its neighbour battle the floods.’
    • ‘Using gliders, balloons, planes and helicopters, each shot is closer to the flocks of birds in flight than most people have ever been to a feathered friend on the ground.’
    • ‘Combat helicopters and fighter planes patrolled the sky, and naval submarines and armed patrol boats guarded the waters of the silent port.’
    • ‘A report has revealed a pilot and passenger narrowly avoided serious injury when their vintage plane crashed at Lower Upham Airfield earlier this year.’
    • ‘It is a US legal requirement that once an aircraft has moved significantly off its flight plan, fighter planes are sent up to investigate.’
    • ‘Strong winds were blamed for the crash of a single-engine plane used to drop retardant on fires 220 miles south of Sydney.’
    aircraft, craft, flying machine
    aeroplane
    airplane, ship
    bird
    kite
    View synonyms

verb

[NO OBJECT]
  • Travel in an aeroplane:

    ‘I had planed into the large air terminal at Los Angeles’
    • ‘An internal passenger flight had crashed on take-off from Washington: coughing a few feet off the ground before planing through a crowded commuter bridge and plunging into the frozen river beyond.’
    • ‘I planed down by Gulf Air's cheap service (called Gulf Traveller) and it was absolutely atrocious.’

Origin

Early 20th century: shortened form.

Pronunciation:

plane

/pleɪn/

Main definitions of plane in English

: plane1plane2plane3plane4

plane3

noun

  • A tool consisting of a block with a projecting steel blade, used to smooth a wooden or other surface by paring shavings from it.

    • ‘Carpenters had mallets, hammers, drills, chisels, scrapers, planes, and copper saws at their disposal.’
    • ‘My primary tool interest is as a collector, especially of wooden planes by different makers.’
    • ‘An interesting handled smooth plane surfaced at a local flea market this past summer.’
    • ‘A Neberschmied was a maker of wood cutting and boring tools, including planes.’
    • ‘When you're on your front drive, using an electric plane on a wooden door, it's rarely a good idea to wear tracksuit trousers with long tie-up cords.’
    • ‘Use a scraping plane or rasp on cut edges to smooth any roughness.’
    • ‘A throng of teenage Jamaicans followed, each making a few smoothing cuts with a plane.’
    • ‘It is surprising that this small family enterprise was still producing wooden planes on into the twentieth century.’
    • ‘When it's not in use, rest your plane on its side to avoid dulling the blade.’
    • ‘He has collected, used and written about wooden planes and their makers for more than twenty years.’
    • ‘You'll need an oil-stone, or water-stone: the sort that carpenters use for their planes and chisels.’

verb

[WITH OBJECT]
  • 1 Smooth (wood or other material) with a plane:

    ‘plane the edges of the wood to a smooth finish’
    • ‘Posts and rafters were hand-sawn and planed using timber from a nearby forest and, to reduce the use of wood, rafters were trussed with steel wire.’
    • ‘The difficult operation of sticking uniform sash bars was greatly simplified by these planes, which allowed both the sash molding and rabbet to be planed from one face.’
    • ‘Subsequently workers at the Union Factory may have removed the Phoenix Company imprint by planing the toes of the acquired planes and then stamping them with the Union Factory imprint and catalog number.’
    • ‘You may need to plane the drawer sides as shown to provide additional clearance.’
    • ‘You may need to plane and/or sand the surface a bit for a smoother fit’
    • ‘Any areas of the wood that show cupping or crowning will need to be planed by using a jointer or table saw as demonstrated in the videotape.’
    • ‘Additional options include planing the slabs to a certain molding profile, turning them on a lathe, and custom carving.’
    • ‘He designed a home from logs he cut and planed, then invited 20 friends from the community to help him raise it.’
    • ‘Timber would have to be cut and planed and the planking would be steamed to create the curvature needed for a hull.’
    • ‘The attainment of the carpenter is that his work is not warped, that the joints are not misaligned, and that the work is truly planed so that it meets well and is not merely finished in sections.’
    • ‘Therefore, these samples were sawn at 2 mm and 3 cm from the basal cut surface and planed with steel blades or a glass knife in a cryo-microtome at a maximum temperature of - 30°C.’
    • ‘The interiors are smoothly planed and drawer bottoms are moderately finished.’
    • ‘Or you may have to shave a hair off a miter or plane the back edge of a cut to make a tight joint.’
    • ‘Eventually, slabs will be edged, planed, and given a specified surface finish.’
    • ‘If the face frame projects beyond the side of the cabinet, plane the wood until it is flush.’
    • ‘Turning 65, a man of leisure but a boy who never grew up, he often retreats to the shed where he planes a piece of wood for no apparent purpose.’
    • ‘There is a theory that the area gets its name from crooked trees, specially planed because they were particularly useful for making boats.’
    • ‘Beyond that, extreme framers may also have joiners and thickness planers, which smooth the surface of raw wood and plane it to a desired thickness.’
    1. 1.1[with object and adverbial] Reduce or remove (unwanted material) with a plane:
      ‘plane off any swollen wood before repainting’
      • ‘Before a term begins, new towels replace old ones and the outer layer of a chopping block is planed down.’
      • ‘Garret tells me those pallets, planed down, can be used for that, too.’
      • ‘The blocks are cut along the length of the tree before being planed down, and the artist is thus obliged to cut through the texture of the wood with very sharp tools.’
      • ‘After a block was printed, it was planed down and reused for another picture.’
      • ‘And even if the play has the faintly over-workshopped quality you often find in American drama, in which all the rough edges are planed down, it still exerts a fiercely intelligent grip.’
      • ‘You should now have the blank planed down to a cross section which is an octagon in shape with 8 equal sides.’
      • ‘The figure's old glue was removed by hand and incremental planing of the inside surfaces brought the halves back into harmony.’
      • ‘Fortunately, the 2000 version of the MG F sorted that out by slimming the boot down and, for this latest model, it has been planed off even more smoothly and given a nice new lip.’
      • ‘But, while there is much to enjoy, I had the strange feeling of seeing the poet's abrasive edges being planed down to turn him into a cuddly national treasure in a cardigan.’
      • ‘The contractor, Tarmac Ltd National Contracting, will plane off the existing surface and lay a new Tarmac surface.’
      • ‘The oak-based glulam was then planed down again to smaller sections.’
    2. 1.2archaic Make smooth or level:
      ‘let us exert our abilities to plane the way for his passage’

Origin

Middle English: from a variant of obsolete French plaine planing instrument, from late Latin plana (in the same sense), from Latin planare make level, from planus plain, level.

Pronunciation:

plane

/pleɪn/

Main definitions of plane in English

: plane1plane2plane3plane4

plane4

(also plane tree)

noun

  • A tall spreading tree of the northern hemisphere, with maple-like leaves and bark which peels in uneven patches.

    London plane
    and → chinar
    • ‘Emei's flora is renowned; sub-tropical ferns and strands of bamboo huddle amidst plane and fir trees.’
    • ‘And now this week I've been sitting at work watching the leaves on the plane trees in Green Park start to change colour.’
    • ‘As you hike up through the gracious park, dotted with palaces turned museums, crickets chirr in the plane trees and pines.’
    • ‘No songbirds to tangle in the hedges, in shrubs, up above your head in the crowns of cypress and in the branches of chestnut trees, plane trees.’
    • ‘The focal point of the park is the now defunct fountain, surrounded by conifers, oaks, planes, jacarandas, and tipiana trees dropping their yellow blossoms.’
    • ‘Attached to the plane tree or any other tree for that matter, there was nothing noble about his robes, and barbarous gold, and all his other gifts.’
    • ‘Outside the grimy windows of the decrepit lounge that serves as a Cabinet office the autumn sunlight filtered through the leaves of the plane trees.’
    • ‘I remember that with the help of my agent we stopped the publication of a calamitous German transmogrification of Loves That Bind where everything was translated and the Paris plane trees were transformed into banana trees.’
    • ‘They used to be quiet oases in the city's most densely populated areas, with beautiful old palms, jacarandas and plane trees and green lawns offering refuge from high-rise living.’

Origin

Late Middle English: from Old French, from Latin platanus, from Greek platanos, from platus broad.

Pronunciation:

plane

/pleɪn/