- capable of igniting spontaneously in air.
Origin of pyrophoric
Dictionary.com Unabridged Based on the Random House Unabridged Dictionary, © Random House, Inc. 2018
Examples from the Web for pyrophoric
The residuum of the distillation is pyrophoric and frequently inflames spontaneously, on exposure to the air.
These two combustibles are in such a state of division, that the residuum is pyrophoric.
- (of a chemical) igniting spontaneously on contact with air
- (of an alloy) producing sparks when struck or scrapedlighter flints are made of pyrophoric alloy
C19: from New Latin pyrophorus, from Greek purophoros fire-bearing, from pur fire + pherein to bear
Word Origin and History for pyrophoric
Online Etymology Dictionary, © 2010 Douglas Harper