[ dee-kuhp-uh l ]
/ diˈkʌp əl /

verb (used with object), de·cou·pled, de·cou·pling.

to cause to become separated, disconnected, or divergent; uncouple.
to absorb the shock of (a nuclear explosion): a surrounding mass of earth and rock can decouple a nuclear blast.
Electronics. to loosen or eliminate the coupling of (a signal between two circuits).

verb (used without object), de·cou·pled, de·cou·pling.

to separate or diverge from an existing connection; uncouple.

Origin of decouple

First recorded in 1595–1605; de- + couple
Related formsde·cou·pler, noun Unabridged Based on the Random House Unabridged Dictionary, © Random House, Inc. 2019

British Dictionary definitions for decouple


/ (ˌdiːˈkʌpəl) /


(tr) to separate (joined or coupled subsystems) thereby enabling them to exist and operate separately
Collins English Dictionary - Complete & Unabridged 2012 Digital Edition © William Collins Sons & Co. Ltd. 1979, 1986 © HarperCollins Publishers 1998, 2000, 2003, 2005, 2006, 2007, 2009, 2012

Word Origin and History for decouple



c.1600, from French découpler "to uncouple," from de- (see de-) + coupler (Old French copler; see couple (v.)). Related: Decoupled; decoupling.

Online Etymology Dictionary, © 2010 Douglas Harper