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Related to onto: hang onto

*onto someone

seeing through someone's deception. (*Typically: be ~; get ~; catch ~.) By the time we got on to the con artists, they were out of town. The sheriff got onto Jed, and Jed wanted to get out of town fast.

*onto something

1. Fig. alerted to or aware of a deceitful plan. (*Typically: be ~; catch ~.) The cops are onto your little game here. Fig. having found something useful or promising; on the verge of discovering something. (*Typically: be ~; get ~.) I think we are really onto something this time. lam onto a new discovery.
References in periodicals archive ?
Sheets of Alcryn have been successfully seamed by calendering a thin strip of PVC onto the edges of the sheets, then fusing the PVC like a hot-melt adhesive.
Fashioning a stamp from a common polymer, than "inking" it with the water-repelling chemical alkanethiol, the scientists pressed a checkerboard-like pattern onto a thin film of gold, creating an array of "hydrophobic" one-micrometer squares.
Of that number, 25 were referred for psychiatric evaluation and treatment, as was one gang member who pushed someone onto the tracks.
Today's semiconductor manufacturers use photolithography to etch microscopic circuits onto computer chips: They shine light through a mask onto a photosensitive surface to create the circuit's pattern.
Clemmer caution that researchers using scanning tunneling microscopes (STMs) to image biological molecules deposited onto a commonly used graphite substrate often mistake biological-looking features of the graphite surface for the biomolecules they aim to study.
Yoshio Okahata and his colleagues at the Tokyo Institute of Technology are testing an alternative hypothesis: that bitter and odorous substances trigger sensory cells in the tongue and nose by adhering to the cells' lipid membranes, and not by latching onto protein receptors.