Meaning of VECTOR in English


I. ˈvektə(r) sometimes -ˌtȯ(ə)r or -ȯ(ə) noun

( -s )

Etymology: New Latin, from Latin, carrier, from vectus (past participle of vehere to carry) + -or — more at way


a. : radius vector 2

b. or vector quantity : a quantity that requires for its complete specification a magnitude, direction, and sense and that is commonly represented by a line segment the length of which designates the magnitude of the vector, the orientation of which designates the direction of the vector, and the sense of which is designated by an arrowhead at one end of the segment : a quantity having both magnitude and direction

c. : a course or compass direction especially of an airplane

2. : an agent capable of transmitting a pathogen from one organism to another either mechanically as carrier (as houseflies that transport typhoid bacteria) or biologically by playing a specific role in the life cycle of the pathogen (as mosquitoes in relation to the malaria parasite)

fleas are vectors of plague

aphids are vectors of plant viruses

3. : a behavioral field of force toward or away from the performance of various acts ; broadly : drive

II. transitive verb

( -ed/-ing/-s )

: to guide (as an airplane or a missile) in flight by means of a radioed vector

system to vector night fighters to attack approaching airplanes — Flying

was vectored into radar contact with these aircraft — Guy Bordelon

the pilots were vectored through the storm by the flight controller — Science

III. noun

1. : an element of a vector space

2. : a sequence of genetic material (as a plasmid) into which a DNA segment has been inserted and that can be used to introduce exogenous genes into the genome of an organism

Webster's New International English Dictionary.      Новый международный словарь английского языка Webster.