air lock

  1. Civil Engineering. an airtight chamber permitting passage to or from a space, as in a caisson, in which the air is kept under pressure.

  2. 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

Other definitions for air-lock (2 of 2)

[ air-lok ]

verb (used with object)
  1. to place in or confine to an air lock: to air-lock divers before they descend.

Origin of air-lock

First recorded in 1855–60 Unabridged Based on the Random House Unabridged Dictionary, © Random House, Inc. 2023

How to use air lock in a sentence

  • In a moment the half-dozen men outside had reached the ship's side, and had pulled themselves down inside the airlock.

    The Sargasso of Space | Edmond Hamilton
  • As Liggett and the men trooped down to the airlock, Kent turned back toward his superior.

    The Sargasso of Space | Edmond Hamilton
  • Kent reached the lower-deck just as Krell entered from the airlock, his swarthy face smiling as he removed his helmet.

    The Sargasso of Space | Edmond Hamilton
  • Liggett and the rest had their suits adjusted, and with bars in their grasp, followed Krell into the airlock.

    The Sargasso of Space | Edmond Hamilton
  • Kent's nod to Jandron went unanswered, and he and Liggett adjusted their helmets and entered the airlock.

    The Sargasso of Space | Edmond Hamilton

British Dictionary definitions for airlock


/ (ˈɛəˌlɒk) /

  1. a bubble in a pipe causing an obstruction or stoppage to the flow

  2. 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