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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 ?
Department of Transportation's (DOT) Title 49 Code of Federal Regulations (CFR) Sections 173-197 on regulated medical waste, and meet or exceed autoclave bag regulations for the interstate and intrastate transport of biohazardous waste for all 50 states.
The uncompromising level of safety on this 150-litre front loading autoclave is achieved by way of a design that incorporates the highest level of door interlock settings, preventing doors on either end of the chamber to be simultaneously opened.
The autoclave was designed under a UNDP/GEF project and is manufactured by a South African company, Mediclave to prevent the spread of HIV/AIDS, hepatitis B and C, tuberculosis and other diseases that can be transmitted through infectious waste.
High-vacuum, high-pressure, high-temperature steam autoclave sterilization of biologically contaminated materials such as these eliminates all forms of infectious biohazardous microorganisms - viral, bacterial and fungal - including the Ebola virus.
In tests measuring tensile strength and elongation, all three Medalist grades were said to exhibit greater values for these properties prior to autoclaving, and greater property retention after as many as 15 autoclave cycles.
An autoclave is a device used in dental clinics all over the world.
Modifications to the Grand Forks facility began in May and the autoclave was delivered in June, when the installation process will begin.
The autoclave, which the company says will be one of the largest production autoclaves in the Northwest, arrived in the Hamilton plant on April 15.
The 40-meter-long cylindrical autoclave performs curing and shaping of composite materials that are layered into the shape of a wing box under high temperature and high pressure, according to Mitsubishi.
The autoclave was designed and partly manufactured by Ashida Mfg.
In attaching an insulated box containing the autoclave, the students at Rice University transform the device into a potential lifesaver.
has pioneered in the development of specialized autoclave systems for use in improving productivity and quality in the investment casting industry.