paraffin meaning

Pronunciation:   "paraffin" in a sentence
  • Noun: paraffin  parufin
    1. From crude petroleum; used for candles and for preservative or waterproof coatings
      - paraffin wax 
    2. A series of non-aromatic saturated hydrocarbons with the general formula CnH(2n+2)
      - methane series, alkane series, alkane, paraffin series 
    3. (British usage) kerosine
      - paraffin oil

    Derived forms: paraffins

    Type of: aliphatic compound, coal oil, kerosene, kerosine, lamp oil, wax

    Encyclopedia: Paraffin

  • [British slang]
    Noun. A tramp, vagrant. Rhyming slang on paraffin lamp.

  • [Electronics]
    A relatively inexpensive, easily available, solid, white petroleum wax. At one time, it was used to impregnate capacitors and coils and to waterproof paper used for insulating purposes.

  • [Medicine]
    a : a waxy crystalline flammable substance obtained esp. from distillates of wood, coal, petroleum, or shale oil that is a complex mixture of hydrocarbons and is used chiefly in coating and sealing, in candles, in rubber compounding, and in pharmaceuticals and cosmetics
    b : any of various mixtures of similar hydrocarbons including mixtures that are semisolid or oily
    2 : ALKANEpar·af·fin·ic adj

  • [Oil and gas]
    UK name for a premium kerosine. used in lamps and space heaters.


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  1. paraffin has the property of dissolving grease.
  2. the fire blazed up when he added paraffin.
  3. paraffins have high diesel indices.
  4. paraffin waxes are normally marketed on the basis of a melting-point test.
  5. the instrument consists of a long, narrow bf3 counter surrounded by a paraffin cylinder.

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