dis·​per·​sant di-ˈspər-sənt How to pronounce dispersant (audio)
: a dispersing agent
especially : a substance for promoting the formation and stabilization of a dispersion of one substance in another
dispersant adjective

Example Sentences

Recent Examples on the Web Toxicity of oil and oil dispersant mixtures to aquatic life. Christie Wilcox, Discover Magazine, 25 Mar. 2014 In addition, officials used 1.8 million gallons of the chemical dispersant Corexit to break up the oil. Linda Marsa, Discover Magazine, 30 Sep. 2015 In order to break up the slick, another 1.84 million gallons of dispersant was added to the mix. Breanna Draxler, Discover Magazine, 11 Jan. 2013 Police in dozens of cities have used teargas as a crowd dispersant since George Floyd died under a policeman’s knee in Minneapolis on May 25. Matt Sledge, NOLA.com, 10 Sep. 2020 Too much of a specific dispersant can affect catalyst performance and reduce fuel economy. Paul Weissler, Popular Mechanics, 31 Aug. 2020 Past administrations have waived environmental reviews after disasters that require real-time decisionmaking, like managing debris after Hurricane Katrina or deploying oil dispersant after the Deepwater Horizon oil spill. Scott Waldman, Scientific American, 5 June 2020 Sunlight impairs dispersants' ability to break up oil into droplets. Tristan Baurick, NOLA.com, 25 Apr. 2018 But the heavy use of dispersants during Deepwater Horizon stirred controversy both over its effectiveness and biological effects. Kevin Mcgill And Matthew Brown, Houston Chronicle, 21 Apr. 2020 See More

These example sentences are selected automatically from various online news sources to reflect current usage of the word 'dispersant.' Views expressed in the examples do not represent the opinion of Merriam-Webster or its editors. Send us feedback.

Word History

First Known Use

1941, in the meaning defined above

Time Traveler
The first known use of dispersant was in 1941

Dictionary Entries Near dispersant

Cite this Entry

“Dispersant.” Merriam-Webster.com Dictionary, Merriam-Webster, https://www.merriam-webster.com/dictionary/dispersant. Accessed 29 Mar. 2023.

Last Updated: - Updated example sentences
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