[path-fahyn-der, pahth]
a person who finds or makes a path, way, route, etc., especially through a previously unexplored or untraveled wilderness.
an airplane, or a person dropped from a plane, sent into a target area to illuminate the area for succeeding aircraft.
a radar beacon beamed into a target area to provide guidance for missiles seeking the target.
(initial capital letter) an unmanned spacecraft that landed on Mars on July 4, 1997, to obtain climatic and geologic data.

1830–40, Americanism; path + finder

pathfinding, noun, adjective Unabridged
Based on the Random House Dictionary, © Random House, Inc. 2014.
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World English Dictionary
pathfinder (ˈpɑːθˌfaɪndə)
1.  a person who makes or finds a way, esp through unexplored areas or fields of knowledge
2.  an aircraft or parachutist who indicates a target area by dropping flares, etc
3.  a radar device used for navigation or homing onto a target

Collins English Dictionary - Complete & Unabridged 10th Edition
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American Heritage
Medical Dictionary

pathfinder path·find·er (pāth'fīn'dər)
A filiform bougie for introduction through a narrow stricture as a guide for the passage of a larger instrument.

The American Heritage® Stedman's Medical Dictionary
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