From Longman Dictionary of Contemporary Englishspeedspeed1 /spiːd/ ●●● S2 W1 noun 1 of movement [countable, uncountable]SPEEDFAST/QUICK the rate at which something moves or travels The truck was travelling at a speed of 50 mph. particles that travel at the speed of light.RegisterIn everyday English, people usually talk about how fast something or someone is rather than using the noun speed: What speed was he going? → How fast was he going?2 of action [countable, uncountable]SPEED the rate at which something happens or is donespeed of the speed of change within the industry a high-speed computer The population was growing at great speed.3 fast [uncountable] the quality of being fast The women’s basketball team has talent, speed, and power.with speed She acted with speed and efficiency.at speed British English a van travelling at speed4 photography [countable] a) TCPthe degree to which photographic film is sensitive to light b) TCPthe time it takes for a camera shutter to open and close a shutter speed of 1/250 second5 drug [uncountable] informalMDD an illegal drug that makes you very active SYN amphetamine 6 → five-speed/ten-speed etc7 → up to speed → full speed/steam ahead at full1(18)COLLOCATIONS – Meanings 1 & 2verbsincrease your speedHe increased his speed until he was running flat out.gain/gather/pick up speed (=go faster)The Mercedes was gradually picking up speed.reach a speedThe trains will reach speeds of 140 mph.maintain a speed (=keep the same speed)The aircraft is designed to maintain a steady speed.reduce speed (=slow down deliberately)She reduced speed as she approached the village.lose speed (=slow down without wanting to)The engine made a strange sound and we lost speed.ADJECTIVES/NOUN + speedan average speedOur average speed was 88 mph.a constant/steady speedThe disc revolves at a constant speed.a top/maximum speed (=the highest possible)The car has a top speed of 132 mph.wind speed (=the speed of the wind)The average wind speed will be about 14 knots.air speed (=the speed of a plane in relation to the air around it)phrasesat high/great speedThe train was travelling at high speed.at low/slow speedEven at low speed, an accident could mean serious injury for a child.at full speed (=running, driving etc as fast as possible)He ran past us at full speed.at/with lightning speed (=very quickly)He moved with his usual lightning speed.at breakneck speed (=very quickly)He drove away at breakneck speed.speed + NOUNa speed limitThe speed limit is 40 mph here.a speed restrictionNew speed restrictions have been introduced.a speed camera (=designed to photograph vehicles going too fast)Most GPS systems will warn you when there are speed cameras.
Examples from the Corpusspeed• The Earth moves round the Sun at a speed of 30 km per second.• The train's designers claim it is capable of attaining speeds in excess of 350 kph.• Keep driving at a constant speed until I tell you differently.• The Embraer 120 turboprop is equipped with twin propellers designed to spin at a constant speed.• Internet advertising, until recently flourishing, is hitting its first speed bump.• Not surprisingly, our overall supply posture as well as its speed of response improved markedly.• sensors which monitor speed and body movement• the internal processing speed of a computer• Puncturing the three blisters received while trying to impress fellow teacup riders with spin speed, get in line for Matterhorn.• Palace lacked the speed of thought, the wit and the crisp execution that their boss displayed in his post-match press conference.• What was the speed of the car at the time of the accident?• For barbell take a note of the light, the colour of the water, the speed of current and the temperature.• The speed at which everything then happened made it all seem rather unreal: I just couldn't get comfortable.• The speed of change in the region has stunned everyone.• The Ferrari Testarossa has a top speed of 188 mph.• Watch your speed when the roads are wet.at a speed of• At room temperature, atoms normally fly around at speeds of hundreds or thousands of miles per hour.• Local-area networks transmitting data at speeds of between 10 megabits per second and 100 megabits per second also exist.• Birds of prey have been registered nose-diving at speeds of up to 1 l 0 miles an hour.• They drove several miles at speeds of up to a hundred and twenty miles an hour.• The force proceeded southeast at a speed of 18 knots, zigzagging at intervals of five to ten minutes. 2.• A pea-sized projectile is hurtled into a target at speeds of up to sixteen thousand miles an hour.• Objects from space hit the Earth all the time-at speeds of more than 10 miles a second.• Shaun Gooch had turned his car into Akers Way at speeds of around eighty miles an hour.at speed• The train was already travelling at speed when she tried to open the carriage door.speedspeed2 ●○○ verb (past tense and past participle sped /sped/ or speeded) 1 [intransitive always + adverb/preposition]FAST/QUICK to go quickly The car sped along the dusty highway.2 [transitive always + adverb/preposition]FAST/QUICK to take someone or something somewhere very quickly An ambulance sped her to the hospital.3 → be speeding4 (also speed something ↔ up) [transitive] to make something happen faster OPP slow down This news should speed his recovery. → speed by → speed up→ See Verb table
Examples from the Corpusspeed• She also wants the Legislature to increase penalties for drivers who speed in school zones.• This could speed the spread of labeling.• The changing nature of the corporation speeded this along.• To speed up publication the presentations have been used unaltered so the book lacks a coherent style or structure.• He says that the technique has meant they can speed up research time, helping to stay ahead of the field.• Now, inexplicably, just as he was about to reach his goal, things had suddenly speeded up.• With warming temperatures, the life cycle speeds up.• People visibly speeding will also get reported and residents will occasionally be joined by officers.Origin speed1 Old English sped “success, quickness”