- the decomposition of a substance, as wood or coal, by heating with a minimal exposure to air, and the collection of the volatile products formed.
Origin of destructive distillation
First recorded in 1825–35
Dictionary.com Unabridged Based on the Random House Unabridged Dictionary, © Random House, Inc. 2018
- the decomposition of a complex substance, such as wood or coal, by heating it in the absence of air and collecting the volatile products
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
- A process by which organic substances such as wood, coal, and oil shale are broken down by heat in the absence of air. This causes them to break down into solids, liquids, and gases, which are then used to make products such as coke, charcoal, oils, and ammonia.
The American Heritage® Science Dictionary Copyright © 2011. Published by Houghton Mifflin Harcourt Publishing Company. All rights reserved.