View synonyms for airlift


[ air-lift ]


  1. a system for transporting persons or cargo by aircraft, especially in an emergency.
  2. the persons or cargo so transported.
  3. the act or process of transporting such a load.
  4. a pump for raising liquids by the pressure of air forced into the pump chamber.

verb (used with object)

  1. to transport (persons or cargo) by airlift.


  1. of or relating to an airlift or airlifts:

    to increase the army's airlift capacity.


/ ˈɛəˌlɪft /


  1. the transportation by air of passengers, troops, cargo, etc, esp when other routes are blocked


  1. tr to transport by an airlift

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Word History and Origins

Origin of airlift1

First recorded in 1940–45; air 1 + lift

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Example Sentences

When he emerged from his medically induced coma in Berlin, having been airlifted there from Omsk, he immediately accused Putin of being behind the attack.

From Time

It jumped the river and raced through the timber to a reservoir known as Mammoth Pool, where a last-minute airlift saved 200 campers from fiery death.

Lufthansa will airlift fresh produce to Britain on Wednesday amid fears of shortages over the festive season, even as France prepares to reopen the main truck-ferry route with its neighbor.

From Fortune

Later that month, she was airlifted to a hospital in Jacksonville, Florida.

In one of the hijackings, an injured crew member had to be airlifted by helicopter to a hospital on land.

From Fortune

“Air refueling and airlift assets were the literal pinch I am describing here,” the official said.

So after a year of record killings, an ambitious rescue effort is underway to airlift the great beasts to safety.

Throughout its history, Israel has helped airlift vulnerable Jewish populations in countries like Yemen and Ethiopia to safety.

That was when “instinct kicked in,” said Chief Master Sergeant James Ross, a friend and fellow airman from the 152nd Airlift Wing.

"We don't have any trains or direct buses," said U.S. Marshal Pickering as he explained the airlift procedure.

The need to respond on a moment's notice adds to the value of airlift and prepositioned ships.

An airlift of supplies dropped by parachute was being organized.

How long do you think it'd take, with the equipment you have, to airlift all of Jonkvank's loyal troops into the city?

It looked as helpless as isolated Berlin did before the first airlift proved what men and planes could do in the way of transport.

The Soviet effort to capture Berlin by blockade was thwarted by the courageous Allied airlift.





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