Definition of penetration in English:


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  • 1The action or process of making a way through or into something.

    ‘the plant grows in clear, still waters where there is strong sunlight penetration’
    • ‘Principal office spaces are orientated to face north and south, so minimizing penetration of direct sunlight.’
    • ‘There is a large amount of debris and silt in the central valley gutter and this requires cleaning as soon as possible, since as we discuss later, there appears to have been problems with rain water penetration through the gutter system.’
    • ‘Third, cut out sufficient of the last year's branch growth to evenly space all branches, allowing even sunlight penetration throughout the treetop.’
    • ‘However, the carp are barred from the pool because they stir up silt, which reduces sunlight penetration and prevents plant growth.’
    • ‘If this manure is not stacked and packed, with steep slopes to prevent rain penetration, fly breeding will occur in it.’
    • ‘If paint fails because of penetration of rain and dew through porous paint, clean and prepare the paint surface.’
    • ‘This distribution allows for good sunlight penetration on almost every street.’
    • ‘This requires controlling sunlight penetration and manipulating the breezes at various times of the year and the day.’
    • ‘He had also installed a sturdy, massive drawbridge into the centre of the eastern wall as the only means of entering, and to minimize hostile penetration.’
    • ‘The hardness of the heat-affected zone can be minimized by reducing penetration into the cast iron base metal.’
    • ‘Special technique should be used to minimize penetration into the steel backing material.’
    • ‘Maximizing digital penetration will add stronger than expected cash flows to the balance sheet and provide an execution success story for Wall Street analysts.’
    • ‘Such readings miss the range and accomplishment of his best poems as well as the intellectual penetration of his vision.’
    • ‘Both of these standards test for impact reduction, retention, shell penetration and peripheral vision.’
    • ‘If you want to venture further, make sure you take the normal precautions for wreck penetration.’
    • ‘Where once a bit of mindless graffiti or frenzied roundabout action might have been enough to attract the attention of passing policepersons the new craze is public penetration.’
    • ‘Working quickly, she dug into the center of her bag for dry clothes that had avoided the driving penetration of the cool October rain and pulled on a sweatshirt and well-worn jeans.’
    • ‘Almost impossible perhaps to stop in its tracks totally, stop it cold, but it just reminds us that there is a need for ever-deeper penetration of these networks than we have achieved to date.’
    • ‘It was significant that, even though the visitors tried to establish their authority straight from the kick-off, they were unable to find the required penetration or inspiration to pierce Scotland.’
    • ‘At the end of 2001, internet penetration in Ireland rose 1% to 34% of the population.’
    perforation, piercing, puncturing, puncture, riddling, stabbing, prick, pricking, probing, goring, spiking, sticking, impaling, impalement, transfixing, transfixion, boring, drilling, lancing, tapping
    infiltration, entry, inflow, spread, spreading, diffusion, percolation, filtering, seepage, soaking, soakage
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    1. 1.1The insertion by a man of his penis into the vagina or anus of a sexual partner.
  • 2The successful selling of a company's or country's products in a particular market or area.

    • ‘Japanese import penetration’
    1. 2.1The extent to which a product is recognized and bought by customers in a particular market.
      • ‘the software has attained a high degree of market penetration’
  • 3The perceptive understanding of complex matters.

    ‘the survey shows subtlety and penetration’
    • ‘It justified this penetration by reference to the satisfaction of popular desires, and the freedom of the press to enlighten the public.’
    insight, discernment, perception, perceptiveness, intelligence, sharp-wittedness, quick-wittedness, cleverness, smartness, incisiveness, keenness, sharpness, trenchancy, astuteness, shrewdness, acuteness, subtlety, clarity, acuity, discrimination, sensitivity, thoughtfulness, profundity, percipience, perspicacity, perspicuity, sagacity
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/ˌpenəˈtrāSH(ə)n/ /ˌpɛnəˈtreɪʃ(ə)n/


Late Middle English from Latin penetratio(n-), from the verb penetrare ‘place within or enter’.