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charcoal

charcoal, substance obtained by partial burning or carbonization (destructive distillation) of organic material. It is largely pure carbon. The entry of air during the carbonization process is controlled so that the organic material does not turn to ash, as in a conventional fire, but decomposes to form charcoal.

The most common variety of charcoal, wood charcoal, was formerly prepared by piling wood into stacks, covering it with earth or turf, and setting it on fire. In this process volatile compounds in the wood (e.g., water) pass off as vapors into the air, some of the carbon is consumed as fuel, and the rest of the carbon is converted into charcoal. In the modern method, wood is raised to a high temperature in an iron retort, and industrially important byproducts, e.g., methanol (wood alcohol or wood spirit), acetone, pyroligneous acid, and acetic acid, are saved by condensing them to their liquid form. Air is not really needed in the carbonization process, and advanced methods of charcoal production do not allow air to enter the kiln. This results in a higher yield, since no wood is burned with the air, and quality is improved. Charcoal is also obtained from substances other than wood such as nut shells and bark; that obtained from bones is called bone black, animal black, or animal charcoal.

Charcoal yields a larger amount of heat in proportion to its volume than is obtained from a corresponding quantity of wood and has the further advantage of being smokeless. The greatest amount is used as a fuel. Charcoal is often used in blacksmithing, for cooking, and for other industrial applications. One of the most important applications of wood charcoal is as a component of gunpowder. It is also used as a reducing agent in metallurgical operations, but this application was diminished by the introduction of coke. A limited quantity is made up into the form of drawing crayon. Bamboo charcoal is the principal ingredient in sumi-e, a form of Japanese ink painting that uses only black ink in various concentrations.

Because of its porous structure, finely divided charcoal is a highly efficient agent for filtering the adsorption of gases and of solids from solution. It is used in sugar refining, in water purification, in the purification of factory air, and in gas masks. Wood charcoal can remove coloring agents from solutions, but this is accomplished more efficiently by animal charcoal. By special heating or chemical processes the adsorptive property can be greatly increased; charcoal so treated is known as activated charcoal.

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"charcoal." The Columbia Encyclopedia, 6th ed.. . Encyclopedia.com. 20 Aug. 2017 <http://www.encyclopedia.com>.

"charcoal." The Columbia Encyclopedia, 6th ed.. . Encyclopedia.com. (August 20, 2017). http://www.encyclopedia.com/reference/encyclopedias-almanacs-transcripts-and-maps/charcoal

"charcoal." The Columbia Encyclopedia, 6th ed.. . Retrieved August 20, 2017 from Encyclopedia.com: http://www.encyclopedia.com/reference/encyclopedias-almanacs-transcripts-and-maps/charcoal

charcoal

char·coal / ˈchärˌkōl/ • n. a porous black solid, consisting of an amorphous form of carbon, obtained as a residue when wood, bone, or other organic matter is heated in the absence of air. ∎  briquettes of charcoal used for barbecueing: lamb grilled on charcoal. ∎  a crayon made of charcoal and used for drawing. ∎  a drawing made using charcoal. ∎  a dark gray color: his charcoal sweater | [as adj.] charcoal gray. • v. [usu. as adj.] (charcoaled) cook over charcoal: charcoaled lobster.

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"charcoal." The Oxford Pocket Dictionary of Current English. . Encyclopedia.com. 20 Aug. 2017 <http://www.encyclopedia.com>.

"charcoal." The Oxford Pocket Dictionary of Current English. . Encyclopedia.com. (August 20, 2017). http://www.encyclopedia.com/humanities/dictionaries-thesauruses-pictures-and-press-releases/charcoal-0

"charcoal." The Oxford Pocket Dictionary of Current English. . Retrieved August 20, 2017 from Encyclopedia.com: http://www.encyclopedia.com/humanities/dictionaries-thesauruses-pictures-and-press-releases/charcoal-0

charcoal

charcoal Porous form of carbon, made traditionally by heating wood in the absence of air, and used in western Europe until late medieval times for smelting iron ore. Today, charcoal is chiefly used for its absorptive properties, to decolourize food liquids such as syrups, and to separate chemicals. Artists use charcoal sticks for sketching. The porous activated charcoal is used in gas masks.

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"charcoal." World Encyclopedia. . Encyclopedia.com. 20 Aug. 2017 <http://www.encyclopedia.com>.

"charcoal." World Encyclopedia. . Encyclopedia.com. (August 20, 2017). http://www.encyclopedia.com/environment/encyclopedias-almanacs-transcripts-and-maps/charcoal

"charcoal." World Encyclopedia. . Retrieved August 20, 2017 from Encyclopedia.com: http://www.encyclopedia.com/environment/encyclopedias-almanacs-transcripts-and-maps/charcoal

charcoal

charcoal (char-kohl) n. a fine black powder, a form of carbon that is the residue from the partial burning of wood and other organic materials. activated c. charcoal that has been treated to increase its properties as an adsorbent, used as an emergency antidote to various poisons.

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"charcoal." A Dictionary of Nursing. . Encyclopedia.com. 20 Aug. 2017 <http://www.encyclopedia.com>.

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"charcoal." A Dictionary of Nursing. . Retrieved August 20, 2017 from Encyclopedia.com: http://www.encyclopedia.com/caregiving/dictionaries-thesauruses-pictures-and-press-releases/charcoal

charcoal

charcoal Finely divided carbon, obtained by heating bones or wood in a closed retort to carbonize the organic matter. Used to purify solutions because it will absorb colouring matter and other impurities; wood charcoal is commonly used as a fuel for barbecues.

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"charcoal." A Dictionary of Food and Nutrition. . Encyclopedia.com. 20 Aug. 2017 <http://www.encyclopedia.com>.

"charcoal." A Dictionary of Food and Nutrition. . Encyclopedia.com. (August 20, 2017). http://www.encyclopedia.com/education/dictionaries-thesauruses-pictures-and-press-releases/charcoal

"charcoal." A Dictionary of Food and Nutrition. . Retrieved August 20, 2017 from Encyclopedia.com: http://www.encyclopedia.com/education/dictionaries-thesauruses-pictures-and-press-releases/charcoal

charcoal

charcoal XIV. The second el., COAL, orig. meant ‘charcoal’; the first el. is obscure, but has been referred to CHARE, as if the comp. meant ‘turn-coal’. Cf. CHAR 2.

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"charcoal." The Concise Oxford Dictionary of English Etymology. . Encyclopedia.com. 20 Aug. 2017 <http://www.encyclopedia.com>.

"charcoal." The Concise Oxford Dictionary of English Etymology. . Encyclopedia.com. (August 20, 2017). http://www.encyclopedia.com/humanities/dictionaries-thesauruses-pictures-and-press-releases/charcoal-1

"charcoal." The Concise Oxford Dictionary of English Etymology. . Retrieved August 20, 2017 from Encyclopedia.com: http://www.encyclopedia.com/humanities/dictionaries-thesauruses-pictures-and-press-releases/charcoal-1

charcoal

charcoal See CHAR.

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"charcoal." A Dictionary of Earth Sciences. . Encyclopedia.com. 20 Aug. 2017 <http://www.encyclopedia.com>.

"charcoal." A Dictionary of Earth Sciences. . Encyclopedia.com. (August 20, 2017). http://www.encyclopedia.com/science/dictionaries-thesauruses-pictures-and-press-releases/charcoal

"charcoal." A Dictionary of Earth Sciences. . Retrieved August 20, 2017 from Encyclopedia.com: http://www.encyclopedia.com/science/dictionaries-thesauruses-pictures-and-press-releases/charcoal

charcoal

charcoal See char.

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"charcoal." A Dictionary of Ecology. . Encyclopedia.com. 20 Aug. 2017 <http://www.encyclopedia.com>.

"charcoal." A Dictionary of Ecology. . Encyclopedia.com. (August 20, 2017). http://www.encyclopedia.com/science/dictionaries-thesauruses-pictures-and-press-releases/charcoal-0

"charcoal." A Dictionary of Ecology. . Retrieved August 20, 2017 from Encyclopedia.com: http://www.encyclopedia.com/science/dictionaries-thesauruses-pictures-and-press-releases/charcoal-0

charcoal

charcoalbarcarole, bole, bowl, cajole, coal, Cole, condole, console, control, dhole, dole, droll, enrol (US enroll), extol, foal, goal, hole, Joel, knoll, kohl, mol, mole, Nicole, parol, parole, patrol, pole, poll, prole, rôle, roll, scroll, Seoul, shoal, skoal, sole, soul, stole, stroll, thole, Tirol, toad-in-the-hole, toll, troll, vole, whole •Creole •carriole, dariole •cabriole • capriole •aureole, gloriole, oriole •wassail-bowl • fishbowl • dustbowl •punchbowl • rocambole • farandole •girandole • manhole • rathole •armhole • arsehole • hellhole •keyhole, kneehole •peephole •sinkhole • pinhole • cubbyhole •hidey-hole • pigeonhole •eyehole, spyhole •foxhole •knothole, pothole •borehole, Warhol •porthole • soundhole • blowhole •stokehole • bolthole • loophole •lughole, plughole •chuckhole • buttonhole • bunghole •earhole • waterhole • wormhole •charcoal • caracole • Seminole •pinole

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"charcoal." Oxford Dictionary of Rhymes. . Encyclopedia.com. 20 Aug. 2017 <http://www.encyclopedia.com>.

"charcoal." Oxford Dictionary of Rhymes. . Encyclopedia.com. (August 20, 2017). http://www.encyclopedia.com/humanities/dictionaries-thesauruses-pictures-and-press-releases/charcoal

"charcoal." Oxford Dictionary of Rhymes. . Retrieved August 20, 2017 from Encyclopedia.com: http://www.encyclopedia.com/humanities/dictionaries-thesauruses-pictures-and-press-releases/charcoal