plasticizer

noun
plas·​ti·​ciz·​er | \ ˈpla-stə-ˌsī-zər How to pronounce plasticizer (audio) \

Definition of plasticizer

: one that plasticizes specifically : a chemical added especially to rubbers and resins to impart flexibility, workability, or stretchability

Examples of plasticizer in a Sentence

Recent Examples on the Web And back in March, a paper by an international team of scientists suggested that astronauts setting up a base on the Moon could use the urea in their urine as a plasticizer to create a concrete-like building material out of lunar soil. Jennifer Ouellette, Ars Technica, "Chitin could be used to build tools and habitats on Mars, study finds," 22 Sep. 2020 Then a 2004 study by Harvard health professor Robert Herrick identified the widespread use of PCBs as a plasticizer in caulk in schools built before 1980, estimating that as many as 14 million students and 26,000 schools could be affected. Author: Tammy Webber, Martha Irvine, Anchorage Daily News, "Toxic PCBs linger in schools as EPA and lawmakers fail to act," 16 Oct. 2019 Then a 2004 study by Harvard health professor Robert Herrick identified the widespread use of PCBs as a plasticizer in caulk in schools built before 1980, estimating that as many as 14 million students and 26,000 schools could be affected. Washington Post, "Toxic PCBs linger in schools; EPA, lawmakers fail to act," 16 Oct. 2019 These particles often contain harmful chemical additives such as flame retardants or plasticizers, but the overwhelming diversity in size and chemical composition also makes toxicity difficult to predict, let alone study. Los Angeles Times, "The biggest likely source of microplastics in California coastal waters? Our car tires," 2 Oct. 2019 One common class of plasticizers is a group of molecules called phthalates—a category that contains carcinogens—although PVC plastic wrap doesn't contain them anymore. Sarah Gibbens, National Geographic, "The sticky problem of plastic wrap," 12 July 2019 In order to make plastics softer, more flexible, and more transparent, they are often mixed with plasticizers, particularly for food packaging, says Ramani Narayan, a chemical engineer at Michigan State University. Sarah Gibbens, National Geographic, "The sticky problem of plastic wrap," 12 July 2019 Plastics are held together with chemicals called plasticizers, and experts have expressed great concern about two: bisphenol-A (known as BPA) and phthalates. Tabor Wordelman, Teen Vogue, "These Are the Ways Plastics Can Mess Up Your Body," 19 Dec. 2018 These common plasticizers, used some nail polishes to increase flexibility and in some shampoos and cleansers to carry fragrance, are controversial because of a possible link to disruption of the human endocrine system. Allure, "The Skin-Care Glossary: A Comprehensive Guide to Everything You Need to Know," 17 Aug. 2018

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

1925, in the meaning defined above

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Time Traveler for plasticizer

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The first known use of plasticizer was in 1925

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Cite this Entry

“Plasticizer.” Merriam-Webster.com Dictionary, Merriam-Webster, https://www.merriam-webster.com/dictionary/plasticizer. Accessed 7 May. 2021.

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More Definitions for plasticizer

plasticizer

noun
plas·​ti·​ciz·​er
variants: or British plasticiser \ ˈplas-​tə-​ˌsī-​zər How to pronounce plasticizer (audio) \

Medical Definition of plasticizer

: a chemical added especially to rubbers and resins to impart flexibility, workability, or stretchability

More from Merriam-Webster on plasticizer

Britannica.com: Encyclopedia article about plasticizer

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