Definition of countdown in English:

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Pronunciation: /ˈkoun(t)doun/


[usually in singular]
1An act of counting numerals in reverse order to zero, especially to time the last seconds before the launching of a rocket or missile: the launch crews would begin their final countdown
More example sentences
  • In Florida today, NASA beginning its countdown for the first space shuttle launch since the Columbia disaster more than two years ago.
  • A series of meetings will take place Thursday to discuss the problem and determine the steps necessary to get back into the launch countdown.
  • Dr. Kraft worked to develop the countdown, launch, and flight procedures, as well as the design of Mission Control itself at the Cape and later in Houston.
1.1 (often countdown to) The final moments before a significant event and the procedures carried out during this time: it is hard to imagine the countdown to war continuing without an intensification of diplomacy
More example sentences
  • As the countdown to war continues Britain can be expected to contribute at least 12,000 troops as well as RAF, Navy and Special Forces units.
  • He was forced to redraft this advice as the countdown to war continued.
  • We are fast approaching the countdown to our big event.
1.2A digital display that counts down.
Example sentences
  • I will never employ any device with a digital countdown.
  • I notice a digital countdown projected below the Napoleon-guy: 1.69, and quickly descending.
  • A countdown is displayed over the grenade, and you see the exact trajectory it will take.

For editors and proofreaders

Syllabification: count·down

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