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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
Collins Discovery Encyclopedia, 1st edition © HarperCollins Publishers 2005
The following article is from The Great Soviet Encyclopedia (1979). It might be outdated or ideologically biased.



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.


The Great Soviet Encyclopedia, 3rd Edition (1970-1979). © 2010 The Gale Group, Inc. All rights reserved.


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.
McGraw-Hill Dictionary of Scientific & Technical Terms, 6E, Copyright © 2003 by The McGraw-Hill Companies, Inc.


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.
McGraw-Hill Dictionary of Architecture and Construction. Copyright © 2003 by McGraw-Hill Companies, Inc.
References in periodicals archive ?
The data on feed intake of birds fed experimental diets revealed that the groups fed on casein (230g) and cooked (227g) HWM were significantly (P= 0.05) different as compared to extruded (226g) and autoclaved (222g) HWM diets.
Non-significant (Pgreater than 0.05) difference was found between the diets containing casein and cooked HWM as well as between the groups fed on extruded and autoclaved HWMs.
Table II.-Chemical analysis of raw, cooked, autoclaved and extruded HWM on dry matter basis.
The PER values of cooked (1.46), autoclaved (1.50) and extruded HWM (1.38) were less than that of casein (standard) diet (1.63).
Autoclaved soil was prepared by heating the soil twice to 120[degrees]C and 15.5 psi for 40 minutes in an autoclave.
Treatments 1 to 3 contained wood flakes without soil, treatments 4 to 6 contained wood flakes plus autoclaved soil, and treatments 7 to 9 contained wood flakes plus non-autoclaved soil.
Twice weekly the contents of each dish were weighed, mixed for aeration, and adjusted with autoclaved water to correct for moisture loss caused by evaporation.
1A) significantly enhanced the degradation of PCP compared to the addition of autoclaved soil (treatment 4, Fig.
One-half of this solution was autoclaved in an open glass flask, and the evaporated fluid was substituted (solution B).
To evaluate the impact of long-term storage at room temperature on 17-OHP in autoclaved filter-paper cards (experiment 2a), we retrieved the first 40 cards from neonates fulfilling certain birth weight criteria (25 neonates weighing >2500 g, 5 weighing 2000-2500 g, 5 weighing 1500-2000 g, and 5 weighing <1500 g) from each year between 1991 and 2000 from the Austrian screening bank.
In the year of sampling, Austrian cards were autoclaved in a Varioklav Dampfsterilisator, Type 400 (H+P Labortechnik GmbH) for 5 min at a temperature of 121 [degrees]C, a humidity of 100%, and pressure set automatically.
The intraassay (withinrun) imprecision (CV) of the method was 7.0% (n = 5 x 24) at 21.9 nmol/L on cards that had not been autoclaved (native 17-OHP) and 6.8% (n = 5 x 24) at 12.3 nmol/L on autoclaved cards (autoclaved 17-OHP); at corresponding concentrations, the interassay (between-run) CV was 7.9% (n = 11 x 12) and 8.0% (n = 11 x 12) for native and autoclaved 17-OHP, respectively.