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oil sand

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noun Geology.
  1. a sand or sandstone containing oil or tarry residue in the pore spaces.
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Origin of oil sand

An Americanism dating back to 1880–85
Dictionary.com Unabridged Based on the Random House Unabridged Dictionary, © Random House, Inc. 2018

British Dictionary definitions for oil sands

oil sand

noun
  1. a sandstone impregnated with hydrocarbons, esp such deposits in Alberta, Canada
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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

oil sands in Science

oil sand

  1. A stratum of sand or sandstone containing petroleum that can be extracted by way of wells. The term is also applied to limestone and dolomite strata that contain petroleum.
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The American Heritage® Science Dictionary Copyright © 2011. Published by Houghton Mifflin Harcourt Publishing Company. All rights reserved.

oil sands in Culture

oil sands

Surface deposits of tarry sand that contain large quantities of petroleum.

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Note

The major deposits of oil sands in North America are in the western United States and northern Canada.

Note

Extracting the oil from these sands is difficult and expensive.
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.