py·​ro·​phor·​ic ˌpī-rə-ˈfȯr-ik How to pronounce pyrophoric (audio)
: igniting spontaneously
: emitting sparks when scratched or struck especially with steel

Examples of pyrophoric in a Sentence

Recent Examples on the Web But again, if the helicopter blades aren't pyrophoric but do conduct electricity, the whole effect disappears. Kyle Hill, Discover Magazine, 1 Aug. 2013 Intel, Nov. 11, 1986 (Aloha): A pyrophoric gas silane cylinder leaks through a valve and catches fire. Mike Rogoway,, 17 July 2017

These examples are programmatically compiled from various online sources to illustrate current usage of the word 'pyrophoric.' Any opinions expressed in the examples do not represent those of Merriam-Webster or its editors. Send us feedback about these examples.

Word History


New Latin pyrophorus, from Greek pyrophoros fire-bearing, from pyr- + -phoros carrying — more at -phore

First Known Use

1788, in the meaning defined at sense 1

Time Traveler
The first known use of pyrophoric was in 1788

Dictionary Entries Near pyrophoric

Cite this Entry

“Pyrophoric.” Dictionary, Merriam-Webster, Accessed 29 May. 2024.

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