AskDefine | Define overshoot

Dictionary Definition

overshoot n : an approach that fails and gives way to another attempt [syn: wave-off, go-around]


1 shoot beyond or over (a target) [ant: undershoot]
2 aim too high; "The plan overshoots its aim" [also: overshot]

User Contributed Dictionary



  • /'ovəɻshut/


  1. The amount by which something goes too far.
    Let's see if we can predict and correct for the overshoot.
  2. (ecology) When the population of a species exceeds its environment's carrying capacity.


  1. To go too far.
    When you drive, you must remember to not overshoot the parking space and end up with two wheels over the line.
  2. To shoot too far.

Extensive Definition

The term overshoot has the following meanings:


In aviation, an overshoot is an aborted landing. See: Go-around and Runway safety area.


In microwave communication, overshoot refers to reception of microwave signals where they are not intended as a result of an unusual atmospheric, e.g., ionospheric, conditions.
Source: from Federal Standard 1037C and from MIL-STD-188

Control theory

In control theory, overshoot refers to an output exceeding its final, steady-state value. For a step input, the percentage overshoot (PO) is the maximum value minus the step value divided by the step value. In the case of the unit step, the overshoot is just the maximum value of the step response minus one.


In ecology, overshoot occurs when a population exceeds the long term carrying capacity of its environment. The consequence of overshoot is called a crash or die-off. For a classic application of this concept to human experience, see Catton.


In economics, overshoot may refer to the overshooting model for the volatility of exchange rates.


In electronics, overshoot refers to the transitory values of any parameter that exceeds its final (steady state) value during its transition from one value to another. An important application of the term is to the output signal of an amplifier.
Usage: Overshoot occurs when the transitory values exceed final value. When they are lower than the final value, the phenomenon is called "undershoot" or "negative overshoot".
A circuit is designed to minimize risetime while containing distortion of the signal within acceptable limits.
  1. Overshoot represents a distortion of the signal.
  2. In circuit design, the goals of minimizing overshoot and of decreasing circuit risetime can conflict.
  3. The magnitude of overshoot depends on time through a phenomenon called "damping." See illustration under step response''.
  4. Overshoot often is associated with settling time, how long it takes for the output to reach steady state; see step response.

Mathematical approximation

In the approximation of functions, overshoot is one term describing quality of approximation. When a function such as a square wave is represented by a summation of terms, for example, a Fourier series or an expansion in orthogonal polynomials, the approximation of the function by a truncated number of terms in the series can exhibit overshoot, undershoot and ringing. The more terms retained in the series, the less pronounced the departure of the approximation from the function it represents. However, though the period of the oscillations decreases, their amplitude does not. See Gibbs phenomenon.

References and notes

overshoot in Czech: Překmit (elektronika)
overshoot in German: Überschwingen
overshoot in Polish: Przeregulowanie

Synonyms, Antonyms and Related Words

alight, come down, come in, crash-land, descend, ditch, downwind, exaggerate, exceed, go beyond, land, level off, light, overdo, overgo, overjump, overleap, overpass, overreach, overrun, overshoot the field, overshoot the mark, overstep, overstride, pancake, pass, settle down, superabound, surpass, talk down, touch down, transcend, upwind
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