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hydrocarbon

[hahy-druh-kahr-buh n, hahy-druh-kahr-]
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noun
  1. any of a class of compounds containing only hydrogen and carbon, as an alkane, methane, CH4, an alkene, ethylene, C2H4, an alkyne, acetylene, C2H2, or an aromatic compound, benzene, C6H6.
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Origin of hydrocarbon

First recorded in 1820–30; hydro-2 + carbon
Related formshy·dro·car·bo·na·ceous, adjective
Dictionary.com Unabridged Based on the Random House Unabridged Dictionary, © Random House, Inc. 2018

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British Dictionary definitions for hydrocarbons

hydrocarbon

noun
  1. any organic compound containing only carbon and hydrogen, such as the alkanes, alkenes, alkynes, terpenes, and arenes
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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

Word Origin and History for hydrocarbons

hydrocarbon

n.

"compound of hydrogen and carbon," 1826, formed in English from hydrogen + carbon.

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Online Etymology Dictionary, © 2010 Douglas Harper

hydrocarbons in Medicine

hydrocarbon

(hī′drə-kärbən)
n.
  1. An organic compound, such as benzene and methane, that contains only carbon and hydrogen.
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The American Heritage® Stedman's Medical Dictionary Copyright © 2002, 2001, 1995 by Houghton Mifflin Company. Published by Houghton Mifflin Company.

hydrocarbons in Science

hydrocarbon

[hī′drə-kärbən]
  1. Any of numerous organic compounds, such as benzene, that contain only carbon and hydrogen.
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The American Heritage® Science Dictionary Copyright © 2011. Published by Houghton Mifflin Harcourt Publishing Company. All rights reserved.

hydrocarbons in Culture

hydrocarbons

Chemical compounds whose main feature is a long chain of carbon atoms bonded to hydrogen atoms. Hydrocarbons are organic molecules (see also organic molecule).

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Note

Many hydrocarbons are used as fuels. Some examples of hydrocarbon fuels are the components of gasoline; methane, which is the main ingredient of natural gas; and some components of wood.
The New Dictionary of Cultural Literacy, Third Edition Copyright © 2005 by Houghton Mifflin Harcourt Publishing Company. Published by Houghton Mifflin Harcourt Publishing Company. All rights reserved.