tere·phthal·ate | \ˌter-ə(f)-ˈtha-ˌlāt \

Definition of terephthalate 

: a salt or ester of terephthalic acid especially : a dimethyl-ester that is a major starting material for polyester fibers and coatings

Examples of terephthalate in a Sentence

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Near-impossible standards In past months, China has banned 24 kinds of solid waste, including unsorted paper, certain textile materials and low-grade polyethylene terephthalate often used in plastic bottles. Megan Janetsky, azcentral, "Some of your recyclables may be going to landfills," 4 July 2018 Polyethylene terephthalate is a strong but lightweight plastic. Julissa Treviño, Smithsonian, "This “Mutant Enzyme” Breaks Down Plastic," 26 Apr. 2018 In 2016, after spending five years searching through piles of waste, Japanese researchers discovered a strain of bacteria that naturally evolved to eat away at polyethylene terephthalate, the common plastic known as PET or polyester. Julissa Treviño, Smithsonian, "This “Mutant Enzyme” Breaks Down Plastic," 26 Apr. 2018 One group of researchers may have accidentally found a better way, developing an enzyme that can break down polyethylene terephthalate (PET), the type of plastic used in water and soda bottles. Avery Thompson, Popular Mechanics, "Researchers Accidentally Find Enzyme to Break Down Plastic," 17 Apr. 2018 A couple years back, scientists discovered bacteria at a Japanese recycling plant that were breaking down a common type of plastic known as polyethylene terephthalate, or PET. David Meyer, Fortune, "Scientists Accidentally Created a 'Mutant Enzyme' That Could Solve The World's Plastic Nightmare," 17 Apr. 2018 That is, in part, because recycling polyethylene terephthalate (PET), the polymer used to make such bottles, back into material robust enough to hold, say, a fizzy drink, is hard. The Economist, "An enzyme that digests plastic could boost recycling," 16 Apr. 2018 Tests on more than 250 bottles showed almost all had contamination from microplastic particles that included polypropylene, nylon, and polyethylene terephthalate (PET), according to a story in Orb, a nonprofit journalism organization. Frank Kummer, Philly.com, "Are you drinking tiny plastics in that bottled water?," 15 Mar. 2018 What’s more, the jerseys will be made of Alpha Yarns, which partially comprised of recycled polyethylene terephthalate (think plastic) bottles. David Whitley, OrlandoSentinel.com, "Magic's season: 5 not-so-burning questions about this team," 16 Oct. 2017

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

1868, in the meaning defined above

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The first known use of terephthalate was in 1868

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