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1. a strong sealed vessel used for chemical reactions at high pressure
2. an apparatus for sterilizing objects (esp surgical instruments) or for cooking by means of steam under pressure
3. Civil engineering a vessel in which freshly cast concrete or sand-lime bricks are cured very rapidly in high-pressure steam



an apparatus for performing various processes under elevated temperatures and above-atmospheric pressure. The reaction is speeded up under these conditions, and the product yield is increased. Autoclaves may be rotary, rocking, horizontal, vertical, or columnar. If necessary, autoclaves can be provided with internal, external, or outboard heat exchangers; with mechanical, electromagnetic, or pneumatic agitating devices; and with instrumentation for measuring and controlling pressure, temperature, liquid fill level, and so forth. The design and basic parameters of a full-scale industrial autoclave vary widely, with capacities ranging from several dozen cm3 to hundreds of m3; autoclaves are designed to withstand pressures of up to 150MN/m3 (1,500 kgf/cm2) at temperatures of up to 500°C. Packless autoclaves driven by splashproof enclosed electric motors, requiring no seal, are promising for the chemical process industry. The rotor in this motor is mounted directly on the agitator shaft and is covered by an airtight, thin-walled enclosure of nonmagnetic material which does not prevent the magnetic lines of force from extending from the stator of the electric motor to its rotor.

Autoclaves are used in the chemical industry in the production of herbicides and organic semifinished products and dyes and in synthesis processes; in hydrometallurgy for leaching with subsequent recovery from solutions of non-ferrous and precious metals and rare elements; in the rubber industry for vulcanizing rubber products; in the canning industry for sterilizing canned goods; and in the construction materials industry. Autoclaves are also widely used in medicine.


Korndorf, B. A. Tekhnika vysokikh davlenii v khimii. Leningrad-Moscow, 1952.
Planovskii A. N., and P. A. Gurevich. Apparatura promyshlen-nosti poluproduktov i krasitelei. [2nd ed.] Moscow, 1961.



An airtight vessel for heating and sometimes agitating its contents under high steam pressure; used for industrial processing, sterilizing, and cooking with moist or dry heat at high temperatures.


A pressure vessel in which an environment of steam at high pressure may be produced, usually at a high temperature; used in the curing of concrete products and in the testing of hydraulic cement for soundness.
References in periodicals archive ?
WSF autoclaves are operating worldwide in research and development and testing, process simulation, piloting and prototypes, and commercial production.
Autoclaves use various peroxide catalysts; tube reactors use peroxide or air (which generates peroxides at high temperatures) or both.
Throughput was lower than planned as autoclave availability was reduced due to the lining remediation program currently underway.
With over fifty standard autoclaves, models including front and top-loading sterilisers with cylindrical or rectangular stainless steel chambers and with capacities from 40 to 700 litres, Priorclave has made the task of searching for you ideal Priorclave much easier.
Processing to continue to receive waste for 24 hours and to operate the two autoclaves for 48 hours," Rue said.
A complete line of autoclaves from compact lab models to large production units is available with instrumentation to control program temperature to 850 F, pressure to 800 psig, vacuum, etc.
Gold production for the quarter was lower than originally expected with autoclave availability falling below planned levels.
Minimum total value of autoclaves to be purchased is 600 000 GBP.
To suit a diverse range of applications within food and drink, dairy and research laboratories, Priorclave is able to supply RSC autoclaves with a choice of steam generation--electrical or direct steam heated, alternatively they can be fitted with an in-house steam generator ideal where continuous sterilising applications take place.
A full-size range of prewired and pre-tested autoclaves is supplied.
It operates two 25 ton-per-day autoclaves, which receive waste from generators located throughout the northeastern United States.
Contract notice: delivery and installation of two autoclaves for the animalium.