Definition of flotation in English:

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Pronunciation: /fləʊˈteɪʃ(ə)n/
(also floatation)


[mass noun]
1The action of floating in a liquid or gas: the body form is modified to assist in flotation
More example sentences
  • Relaxation massages and flotation assists with muscle relaxation and result in lower HR, BP and improved mood states.
  • You can pick out details now; the bright red flotation vests, the faces under the broad sunhats, the stickers that say ‘Cruiser’.
  • Polymeric foams have been used for such things as building insulation, flotation devices and furniture cushions.
1.1The separation of small particles of a solid by their different capacities to float.
Example sentences
  • Some of the most common separation techniques are leaching, flotation, filtration, chromatography, and centrifugal force.
  • Colloidal phenomena are key in the separation of minerals from their ores by particle flotation.
  • This is still a difficult market and it is obvious that the climate is different to the last flotation.
1.2The capacity to float; buoyancy.
Example sentences
  • If you do decide to go for the jacket and salopette option, ensure that the trousers are not buoyant and that all the floatation is in the jacket.
  • Because the decking is a solid sheet, providing substantially more flotation, shoes can be smaller and still ride atop the snow like larger wood and lacing snowshoes.
  • Using inflatable toys and a PFD for flotation, participants swim down a stretch of the river.
2The process of offering a company’s shares for sale on the stock market for the first time.
Example sentences
  • By contrast with the most recent batch of stockmarket flotations during the dotcom boom, there are no wild valuations this time round.
  • His experience encompasses flotations, secondary offerings, private placements and mergers and acquisitions in Britain and Ireland.
  • Corporate financiers are looking at a dearth of stockmarket flotations this year and expect to rely on companies disposing of non-core businesses and management buyouts to earn a crust.


Early 19th century: alteration of floatation (from float) on the pattern of French flottaison. The spelling flot- was influenced by flotilla.

For editors and proofreaders

Line breaks: flo|ta¦tion

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