• synonyms


  1. the cracking of petroleum or the like in the presence of hydrogen.
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Origin of hydrocracking

First recorded in 1935–40; hydro-2 + cracking


verb (used with object)
  1. to crack (petroleum or the like) in the presence of hydrogen.
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Dictionary.com Unabridged Based on the Random House Unabridged Dictionary, © Random House, Inc. 2018

hydrocracking in Science


  1. A process by which the hydrocarbon molecules of petroleum are broken into simpler molecules, as of gasoline or kerosene, by the addition of hydrogen under high pressure and in the presence of a catalyst. See also cracking.
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The American Heritage® Science Dictionary Copyright © 2011. Published by Houghton Mifflin Harcourt Publishing Company. All rights reserved.