naph·​tha | \ ˈnaf-thə How to pronounce naphtha (audio) , nonstandard ˈnap- How to pronounce naphtha (audio) \

Definition of naphtha

1 : any of various volatile often flammable liquid hydrocarbon mixtures used chiefly as solvents and diluents
2 : petroleum

Examples of naphtha in a Sentence

Recent Examples on the Web Two years later, 13 miners were buried alive in the central shaft of the tunnel when a candle ignited naphtha fumes, setting off an explosion and filling the shaft with water., 24 Sep. 2021 Some 20% of Asia’s naphtha, a precursor to benzene and other key chemicals for plastics, is sourced through the Suez Canal. Tim Mcdonnell, Quartz, 27 Mar. 2021 Plastics manufacturers in Asia could soon see the price of raw petrochemical materials like naphtha rise, Wood Mackenzie analyst Mark Williams wrote in its analysis. Tim Mcdonnell, Quartz, 27 Mar. 2021 Global appetite for oil remains below pre-pandemic levels despite a pickup in consumption of gasoline, naphtha and fuel oil, which is used to heat homes and power ships. Joe Wallace, WSJ, 7 Feb. 2021 Crude oil can be converted into naphtha, and gas converted into ethane, which are processed at sprawling industrial compounds into ethylene and plastic resins, then used to create consumer goods like grocery bags and single-use water bottles. Kate Aronoff, The New Republic, 4 Sep. 2020 While refining margins on polymers are also low at present because of oversupply, the ethylene-naphtha spread has improved from a near-seven-year low of $190 per ton a month ago to $394 a ton now. Washington Post, 24 Sep. 2019 That makes Appalachia’s ethane, though still cheap, less competitive as a basic building block of plastics, compared to naphtha — a petroleum product found in other regions whose price falls along with oil. James Bruggers, The Courier-Journal, 21 Mar. 2020 The complex’s chemical plant has shut, including its olefins unit -- which takes feedstocks such as naphtha, butane, propane and ethane from the oil refinery and converts them into ethylene and propylene that are used to make plastics. Bloomberg Wire, Dallas News, 12 Feb. 2020

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

1543, in the meaning defined at sense 1

History and Etymology for naphtha

Latin, from Greek, of Iranian origin; akin to Persian neft naphtha

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The first known use of naphtha was in 1543

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Cite this Entry

“Naphtha.” Dictionary, Merriam-Webster, Accessed 21 Jan. 2022.

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More Definitions for naphtha


naph·​tha | \ ˈnaf-thə How to pronounce naphtha (audio) , ˈnap-thə \

Kids Definition of naphtha

: any of various usually flammable liquids prepared from coal or petroleum and used especially to dissolve substances


naph·​tha | \ ˈnaf-thə How to pronounce naphtha (audio) , ˈnap- How to pronounce naphtha (audio) \

Medical Definition of naphtha

: any of various volatile often flammable liquid hydrocarbon mixtures used chiefly as solvents and diluents

More from Merriam-Webster on naphtha

Nglish: Translation of naphtha for Spanish Speakers Encyclopedia article about naphtha


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