/di tek"teuhr/ , n.
1. a person or thing that detects.
2. a device for detecting smoke, fire, or some other hazardous condition.
3. a device for detecting the presence of metal, contraband, or other items that might be hidden or concealed.
a. a device for detecting electric oscillations or waves.
b. a device, as a crystal detector or a vacuum tube, that rectifies the alternating current in a radio receiver.
[ 1535-45; detector revealer, equiv. to L deteg ( ere ) to uncover, reveal (see DETECT) + -tor -TOR ]