formic acid

noun
for·​mic acid | \ˈfȯr-mik- \

Definition of formic acid 

: a colorless pungent fuming vesicant liquid acid CH2O2 found especially in ants and in many plants and used chiefly in dyeing and finishing textiles

Examples of formic acid in a Sentence

Recent Examples on the Web

First, the Formica ants squirt the trap-jaw ants with a stream of formic acid that stuns them. Rachel Becker, The Verge, "High-speed video solves how Florida ants furnish their nests with their enemies’ bodies," 18 Nov. 2018 Entry uses potassium formate, derived from formic acid, a common and easily-synthesized compound. Joseph N. Distefano, Philly.com, "As storms hit, SynaTek of Souderton ships high-end de-icer," 6 Mar. 2018 By using glycerol, Kenis says that his team was able to reduce the overpotential in that part of their system by nearly two-thirds and churn out formic acid, which is widely used in chemical synthesis. Robert Service, Science | AAAS, "Two new ways to turn ‘garbage’ carbon dioxide into fuel," 1 Sep. 2017 After helping to make important proteins, formaldehyde gets turned into formic acid and exits the body through urine. Kat Eschner, Smithsonian, "‘Aspartame Causes Cancer’ Was a Classic Internet Hoax," 27 Jan. 2017

These example sentences are selected automatically from various online news sources to reflect current usage of the word 'formic acid.' 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 formic acid

1790, in the meaning defined above

History and Etymology for formic acid

irregular from Latin formica ant — more at pismire

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Last Updated

26 Nov 2018

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Time Traveler for formic acid

The first known use of formic acid was in 1790

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More Definitions for formic acid

formic acid

noun

Medical Definition of formic acid 

: a colorless pungent fuming vesicant liquid acid CH2O2 found especially in ants and in many plants and used chiefly in dyeing and finishing textiles

More from Merriam-Webster on formic acid

Britannica.com: Encyclopedia article about formic acid

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