- to treat (rubber) with sulfur and heat, thereby imparting strength, greater elasticity, durability, etc.
- to subject (a substance other than rubber) to some analogous process, as to harden it.
Also especially British, vul·can·ise.
Origin of vulcanize
Dictionary.com Unabridged Based on the Random House Unabridged Dictionary, © Random House, Inc. 2018
Examples from the Web for vulcanize
- to treat (rubber) with sulphur or sulphur compounds under heat and pressure to improve elasticity and strength or to produce a hard substance such as vulcanite
- to treat (substances other than rubber) by a similar process in order to improve their properties
Word Origin and History for vulcanize
Online Etymology Dictionary, © 2010 Douglas Harper
- To harden rubber by combining it with sulfur or other substances in the presence of heat and pressure. Vulcanization gives rubber strength, resistance, and elasticity.
The American Heritage® Science Dictionary Copyright © 2011. Published by Houghton Mifflin Harcourt Publishing Company. All rights reserved.