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Collins

sponson

  

      n  
1      (Naval)   an outboard support for a gun enabling it to fire fore and aft  
2    a semicircular gun turret on the side of a tank  
3    a float or flotation chamber along the gunwale of a boat or ship  
4    a structural projection from the side of a paddle steamer for supporting a paddle wheel  
5    a structural unit attached to a helicopter fuselage by fixed struts, housing the main landing gear and inflatable flotation bags  
     (C19: perhaps from expansion)  
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sponsion, sponsor, spontoon, sponsored

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