- a person who finds or makes a path, way, route, etc., especially through a previously unexplored or untraveled wilderness.
- an airplane, or a person dropped from a plane, sent into a target area to illuminate the area for succeeding aircraft.
- a radar beacon beamed into a target area to provide guidance for missiles seeking the target.
- (initial capital letter) an unmanned spacecraft that landed on Mars on July 4, 1997, to obtain climatic and geologic data.
Origin of pathfinder
Dictionary.com Unabridged Based on the Random House Unabridged Dictionary, © Random House, Inc. 2018
Examples from the Web for pathfinding
Fremont's "pathfinding" virtually completed the exploration of the country.American Men of Action
Burton E. Stevenson
The trouble began when Smith was pathfinding on the upper Athabasca for the new transcontinental.The Last Spike
Wonderful as they were, with their pathfinding and all that, they could hardly penetrate to his humble, sequestered little home.Pee-wee Harris on the Trail
Percy Keese Fitzhugh
- a person who makes or finds a way, esp through unexplored areas or fields of knowledge
- an aircraft or parachutist who indicates a target area by dropping flares, etc
- a radar device used for navigation or homing onto a target
Word Origin and History for pathfinding
Online Etymology Dictionary, © 2010 Douglas Harper
- A filiform bougie for introduction through a narrow stricture as a guide for the passage of a larger instrument.