carbolic acid

carbolic acid

Organic compound, simplest member of the class of phenols. A colourless liquid with a bland, sweetish odour, it is toxic and caustic. It is a high-volume industrial chemical used chiefly in the manufacture of phenol-formaldehyde resins (see formaldehyde; plastics), epoxy resins, nylon, herbicides, biocides, other synthetic chemicals and pharmaceuticals, and dyes. It is also a solvent and general disinfectant. The phenol coefficient is a number that expresses the germicidal action of a chemical compared with that of phenol.


carbolic acid or phenol

This entry comes from Encyclopædia Britannica Concise.
For the full entry on carbolic acid, visit

Seen & Heard

What made you look up carbolic acid? Please tell us what you were reading, watching or discussing that led you here.

Get Our Free Apps
Voice Search, Favorites,
Word of the Day, and More
Join Us on FB & Twitter
Get the Word of the Day and More