Stream Aggregate is the most efficient physical operator for value aggregation and generating distict rows. Stream here refers to record stream. Give you a typical example here. When you use SqlDataReader to retrieve reuslt from a query, the rows are read one by one by calling SqlDataReader.Read() method. You can say that you are streaming records from SQL Server to your client. If you perform aggregates in the stream, for instance, you are asked to count number of rows in the stream. In this example, you only need to increase the value with 1 to a variable in your application whenever Read() is involked with true returned. This is called Stream Aggregate.