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air lock

Civil Engineering. an airtight chamber permitting passage to or from a space, as in a caisson, in which the air is kept under pressure.
the impedance in the functioning of a pump or a system of piping caused by the presence of an air bubble; vapor lock.
Origin of air lock
First recorded in 1855-60


[air-lok] /ˈɛərˌlɒk/
verb (used with object)
to place in or confine to an air lock:
to air-lock divers before they descend.
First recorded in 1855-60 Unabridged
Based on the Random House Dictionary, © Random House, Inc. 2018.
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Examples from the Web for airlock
Historical Examples
  • Expected a fight, but some big guy let us in through an airlock.

    In the Orbit of Saturn Roman Frederick Starzl
  • He stood in the airlock door for long minutes, staring angrily about.

    Pariah Planet Murray Leinster
  • Then he opened the airlock door, hating the fact that he shook and trembled.

    Pariah Planet Murray Leinster
  • Tolto dragged him in to the safety of the airlock opening, where he could watch.

    The Martian Cabal Roman Frederick Starzl
  • "Same procedure as before," Norris said, stepping out of the airlock.

    The Long Voyage Carl Richard Jacobi
  • Lura and a half dozen of the crew were passed through the airlock and joined them.

    Giants on the Earth Sterner St. Paul Meek
  • She entered the airlock and in a few moments was again inside the ship.

    Giants on the Earth Sterner St. Paul Meek
  • Damis gave a mighty bound and leaped through the airlock of the ship.

    Giants on the Earth Sterner St. Paul Meek
  • Jarvis and Leroy went through the airlock out to the grey plain.

    Valley of Dreams Stanley Grauman Weinbaum
  • Why don't you jump out the window, Roger, remembering to shut the airlock after you?

    Bread Overhead Fritz Reuter Leiber
British Dictionary definitions for airlock


a bubble in a pipe causing an obstruction or stoppage to the flow
an airtight chamber with regulated air pressure used to gain access to a space that has air under pressure
Collins English Dictionary - Complete & Unabridged 2012 Digital Edition
© William Collins Sons & Co. Ltd. 1979, 1986 © HarperCollins
Publishers 1998, 2000, 2003, 2005, 2006, 2007, 2009, 2012
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