eth·​a·​nol | \ˈe-thə-ˌnȯl, -ˌnōl, British also ˈē-\

Definition of ethanol 

: a colorless volatile flammable liquid C2H5OH that is the intoxicating agent in liquors and is also used as a solvent and in fuel

called also ethyl alcohol, grain alcohol

Examples of ethanol in a Sentence

Recent Examples on the Web

But these are the same people who said in 2006 that cellulosic ethanol would soon be an economic alternative to fossil fuels. The Editorial Board, WSJ, "Peak Embarrassment in War on Oil," 25 Oct. 2018 The two big sources of renewable transportation remain biofuel, like ethanol, and renewable electricity. David Grossman, Popular Mechanics, "Renewable Energy Will Grow Massively Across The Globe by 2023, Says IEA Report," 9 Oct. 2018 Carbon intensity for fuels takes into account lifecycle carbon emissions, including any emissions created processing oil into gasoline, processing feedstock into ethanol, or transporting a fuel from a refinery to the point of sale. Megan Geuss, Ars Technica, "California amends rules to push vehicles toward hydrogen, electricity, biofuel," 30 Sep. 2018 However, since ethanol contains less energy per volume than gasoline, FFVs typically get about 20-30 percent fewer miles per gallon when fueled with E85, thus wiping out any savings per gallon. Jerry Reynolds, Houston Chronicle, "Know the facts about Flex Fuel vehicles, E85 Gas," 6 Apr. 2018 This makes sense because the alcohol (methanol, ethanol, propanol) molecules have regions that both prefer water (hydrophilic) and regions that prefer lipids (hydrophobic). Bob Weber,, "DIY heated seats not worth the hassle," 10 Dec. 2017 The medical examiners office concluded Couillard died of heroin and ethanol intoxication. Jane Ford-stewart, Milwaukee Journal Sentinel, "West Allis man get 6 years in prison for selling heroin that killed 20-year-old," 11 July 2018 Engineers are expected to spend six months studying the feasibility of piping carbon dioxide from White Energy's ethanol facilities in Plainview and Hereford, both located in the Texas panhandle, with operations slated to begin as soon as 2021. James Osborne, Houston Chronicle, "Oxy considering carbon capture project," 19 June 2018 Trump campaigned on a promise to support the Renewable Fuel Standard, and his administration laid out ethanol targets that pleased corn producers last year. Andrea Drusch, star-telegram, "Cruz’s one-man energy crusade | Fort Worth Star-Telegram," 20 Mar. 2018

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

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First Known Use of ethanol

1892, in the meaning defined above

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Last Updated

14 Nov 2018

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Time Traveler for ethanol

The first known use of ethanol was in 1892

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eth·​a·​nol | \ˈeth-ə-ˌnȯl, -ˌnōl \

Medical Definition of ethanol 

: a colorless volatile flammable liquid C2H5OH that is the intoxicating agent in liquors and is also used as a solvent

called also ethyl alcohol, grain alcohol

— see alcohol sense 1

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Comments on ethanol

What made you want to look up ethanol? Please tell us where you read or heard it (including the quote, if possible).


noxious or harmful

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