Orbital vs. Orbit - What's the difference?

Wikipedia

  • Orbit

    In physics, an orbit is the gravitationally curved trajectory of an object, such as the trajectory of a planet around a star or a natural satellite around a planet. Normally, orbit refers to a regularly repeating trajectory, although it may also refer to a non-repeating trajectory. To a close approximation, planets and satellites follow elliptic orbits, with the central mass being orbited at a focal point of the ellipse, as described by Kepler's laws of planetary motion. For most situations, orbital motion is adequately approximated by Newtonian mechanics, which explains gravity as a force obeying an inverse square law. However, Albert Einstein's general theory of relativity, which accounts for gravity as due to curvature of spacetime, with orbits following geodesics, provides a more accurate calculation and understanding of the exact mechanics of orbital motion.

Wiktionary

  • Orbital (adjective)

    Of or relating to an orbit.

  • Orbital (adjective)

    Of or relating to the eye socket (eyehole).

  • Orbital (noun)

    A specification of the energy and probability density of an electron at any point in an atom or molecule.

  • Orbital (noun)

    An orbital motorway.

  • Orbit (noun)

    A circular or elliptical path of one object around another object, particularly in astronomy and space travel.

    "The Moon's orbit around the Earth takes nearly one month to complete."

  • Orbit (noun)

    A sphere of influence; an area of control.

    "In the post WWII era, several eastern European countries came into the orbit of the Soviet Union."

  • Orbit (noun)

    The course of one's usual progression, or the extent of one's typical range.

    "The convenience store was a heavily travelled point in her daily orbit, as she purchased both cigarettes and lottery tickets there."

  • Orbit (noun)

    The bony cavity containing the eyeball; the eye socket.

  • Orbit (noun)

    A mathematical function that describes the wave-like behavior of an electron in an atom; area of the highest probability of electron´s occurrence around the atom's nucleus.

  • Orbit (noun)

    A collection of points related by the evolution function of a dynamical system.

  • Orbit (noun)

    The subset of elements of a set X to which a given element can be moved by members of a specified group of transformations that act on X.

  • Orbit (noun)

    A state of increased excitement, activity, or anger.

    "Dad went into orbit when I told him that I'd crashed the car."

  • Orbit (verb)

    To circle or revolve around another object.

    "The Earth orbits the Sun."

  • Orbit (verb)

    To move around the general vicinity of something.

    "The harried mother had a cloud of children orbiting her, asking for sweets."

  • Orbit (verb)

    To place an object into an orbit around a planet.

    "A rocket was used to orbit the satellite."

Oxford Dictionary

  • Orbital (adjective)

    relating to an orbit or orbits.

  • Orbital (adjective)

    (of a road) passing round the outside of a town.

  • Orbital (noun)

    an orbital road.

  • Orbital (noun)

    each of the actual or potential patterns of electron density which may be formed in an atom or molecule by one or more electrons, and can be represented as a wave function.

  • Orbit (noun)

    the curved path of a celestial object or spacecraft round a star, planet, or moon, especially a periodic elliptical revolution

    "the Earth's orbit around the sun"

  • Orbit (noun)

    one complete circuit round an orbited body

    "the satellite will complete one orbit every 12 hours"

  • Orbit (noun)

    the state of moving in an orbit

    "the earth is in orbit around the sun"

  • Orbit (noun)

    the path of an electron round an atomic nucleus.

  • Orbit (noun)

    an area of activity, interest, or influence

    "audiences drawn largely from outside the Party orbit"

  • Orbit (noun)

    the cavity in the skull of a vertebrate that contains the eye; the eye socket.

  • Orbit (noun)

    the area round the eye of a bird or other animal.

  • Orbit (verb)

    (of a celestial object or spacecraft) move in orbit round (a star or planet)

    "Mercury orbits the Sun"

  • Orbit (verb)

    move in a circle

    "the discs spun and orbited slowly"

  • Orbit (verb)

    put (a satellite) into orbit

    "France has been orbiting satellites with her own launcher"

Webster Dictionary

  • Orbital (adjective)

    Of or pertaining to an orbit.

  • Orbit (noun)

    The path described by a heavenly body in its periodical revolution around another body; as, the orbit of Jupiter, of the earth, of the moon.

  • Orbit (noun)

    An orb or ball.

  • Orbit (noun)

    The cavity or socket of the skull in which the eye and its appendages are situated.

  • Orbit (noun)

    The skin which surrounds the eye of a bird.

Princeton's WordNet

  • Orbital (adjective)

    of or relating to an orbit;

    "orbital revolution"

    "orbital velocity"

  • Orbital (adjective)

    of or relating to the eye socket;

    "orbital scale"

    "orbital arch"

  • Orbit (noun)

    the (usually elliptical) path described by one celestial body in its revolution about another;

    "he plotted the orbit of the moon"

  • Orbit (noun)

    a particular environment or walk of life;

    "his social sphere is limited"

    "it was a closed area of employment"

    "he's out of my orbit"

  • Orbit (noun)

    an area in which something acts or operates or has power or control:

    "the range of a supersonic jet"

    "the ambit of municipal legislation"

    "within the compass of this article"

    "within the scope of an investigation"

    "outside the reach of the law"

    "in the political orbit of a world power"

  • Orbit (noun)

    the path of an electron around the nucleus of an atom

  • Orbit (noun)

    the bony cavity in the skull containing the eyeball

  • Orbit (verb)

    move in an orbit;

    "The moon orbits around the Earth"

    "The planets are orbiting the sun"

    "electrons orbit the nucleus"

Illustrations

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