- a series of persons relieving one another or taking turns; shift.
- a fresh set of dogs or horses posted in readiness for use in a hunt, on a journey, etc.
- relay race.
- a length or leg in a relay race.
- Machinery. an automatic control device in which the settings of valves, switches, etc., are regulated by a powered element, as a motor, solenoid, or pneumatic mechanism actuated by a smaller, sensitive element.
- Electricity. a device, usually consisting of an electromagnet and an armature, by which a change of current or voltage in one circuit is used to make or break a connection in another circuit or to affect the operation of other devices in the same or another circuit.
- (initial capital letter) U.S. Aerospace. one of an early series of experimental low-altitude, active communications satellites.
verb (used with object), re·layed, re·lay·ing.
- to carry forward by or as if by relays: to relay a message.
- to provide with or replace by fresh relays.
- Electricity. to retransmit (a signal, message, etc.) by or as if by means of a telegraphic relay.
verb (used without object), re·layed, re·lay·ing.
- Electricity. to retransmit a signal or message electronically.
verb (used with object), re·laid, re·lay·ing.
verb (used with object), re-laid, re-lay·ing.
- to lay again.
- a person or team of people relieving others, as on a shift
- a fresh team of horses, dogs, etc, posted at intervals along a route to relieve others
- the act of relaying or process of being relayed
- short for relay race
- one of the sections of a relay race
- an automatic device that controls the setting of a valve, switch, etc, by means of an electric motor, solenoid, or pneumatic mechanism
- electronics an electrical device in which a small change in current or voltage controls the switching on or off of circuits or other devices
- a combination of a receiver and transmitter designed to receive radio signals and retransmit them, in order to extend their range
- (as modifier)a relay station
verb (rɪˈleɪ) (tr)
- to carry or spread (something, such as news or information) by relays
- to supply or replace with relays
- to retransmit (a signal) by means of a relay
- British to broadcast (a performance) by sending out signals through a transmitting stationthis concert is being relayed from the Albert Hall
late 14c., “hounds placed along a line of chase,” from Middle French relai “reserve pack of hounds or other animals” (13c.), from Old French relaier “to exchange tired animals for fresh,” literally “leave behind,” from re- “back” (see re-) + laier “to leave” (see delay (v.)). The etymological sense is “to leave (dogs) behind (in order to take fresh ones).” Of horses, 1650s. Electromagnetic sense first recorded 1860. As a type of foot-race, it is attested from 1898.
c.1400, “to set a pack of (fresh) hounds after a quarry;” also “change horses,” from Old French relaiier, from relai (see relay (n.)). Related: Relayed; relaying.
- An electrical switch that is operated by an electromagnet, such as a solenoid. When a small current passes through the electromagnet’s coiled wire, it produces a magnetic field that attracts a movable iron bar, causing it to pivot and open or close the switch.