a long tubular conduit or series of pipes, often underground, with pumps and valves for flow control, used to transport crude oil, natural gas, water, etc., especially over great distances.
a route, channel, or process along which something passes or is provided at a steady rate; means, system, or flow of supply or supplies: Freighters and cargo planes are a pipeline for overseas goods.
a channel of information, especially one that is direct, privileged, or confidential; inside source; reliable contact.
verb (used with object), pipe·lined, pipe·lin·ing.
to convey by or as if by pipeline: to pipeline oil from the far north to ice-free ports; to pipeline graduates into the top jobs.
in the pipeline,
- Informal.in the process of being developed, provided, or completed; in the works; under way.
- Government Informal.(of funds) authorized but not spent.
Origin of pipeline
First recorded in 1855–60; pipe1
Based on the Random House Unabridged Dictionary, © Random House, Inc. 2019
British Dictionary definitions for in the pipeline
a long pipe, esp underground, used to transport oil, natural gas, etc, over long distances
a medium of communication, esp a private one
in the pipeline in the process of being completed, delivered, or produced
to convey by pipeline
to supply with a pipeline
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 in the pipelinen.
1859, "continuous line of pipes," from pipe (n.1) + line (n.). Figurative sense of "channel of communication" is from 1921; surfer slang meaning "hollow part of a large wave" is attested by 1963.
Online Etymology Dictionary, © 2010 Douglas Harper
Idioms and Phrases with in the pipeline1
In process, under way, as in The blueprints for the new machine are in the pipeline, but it will take months to get approval. [Colloquial; 1940s] Also see in the works.2
Budgeted for something but not yet spent, as in There's $5 million more in the pipeline for the city schools. [Colloquial; second half of 1900s]
The American Heritage® Idioms Dictionary
Copyright © 2002, 2001, 1995 by Houghton Mifflin Harcourt Publishing Company. Published by Houghton Mifflin Harcourt Publishing Company.