Full record for asteroid belt n.

Definition the toroidal region of space around a star in which most asteroid orbits occur.
OED requirements antedating 1877
Earliest cite The Manufacturer and Builder"
Comment Mike Christie submitted a 1932 cite from Clifford Simak's "The Asteroid of Gold", based on a suggestion from Brian Ameringen. Cory Panshin submitted a cite from a 1947 reprint of Manly Wade Wellman's "The Disc-Men of Jupiter"; Jeff Prucher verified the cite in the 1931 original magazine appearance. Bill Mullins submitted a cite from a science news column "Mechanical and Physical Astronomy" in the journal "The Manufacturer and Builder" for March 1877.

(Earliest cite in the OED: 1939.)

Last modified 6 July, 2008

Citations for asteroid belt n.

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1931 M. W. Wellman in Wonder Stories Sept. 533/2 If it's so dangerous, why couldn't we fly over the asteroid belt?
1932 C. D. Simak in Wonder Stories Nov. 515/1 The two tiny slabs of rock, revolving about each other, made up a part of the asteroid belt, all that remained of a mythical planet between Mars and Jupiter (which must have disrupted into the thousands of tiny fragments many millions of years before).
1947 M. W. Wellman in Startling Stories May 80/1 The asteroid belt was many millions of miles across, but they hoped to encounter very few of the spinning particles at this time.
1947 M. W. Wellman in Startling Stories May 80/1 If it's so dangerous, why couldn't we fly over the asteroid belt?
1999 M. J. Friedman My Brother's Keeper iii. ii. 19 The most remarkable thing we encountered was an asteroid belt.
2001 Locus June 33/2 Martin Humphries presents rival Dan Randolph a solution ‥ that will also help Earth: build a fusion rocket so it is economically feasible to mine the Asteroid Belt for the energy the Earth needs.