carrageen(redirected from carragheen)
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name commonly used for the multicellular marine algae. Simpler forms, consisting of one cell (e.g., the diatom) or of a few cells, are not generally called seaweeds; these tiny plants help to make up plankton.
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, phylum (division) of the kingdom Protista consisting of the photosynthetic organisms commonly known as red algae. Most of the world's seaweeds belong to this group.
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(also, Irish moss), the commercial name for the red seaweeds Gigartina mamillosa and Chindrus crispus, which occur along the coasts of the North Atlantic (C. crispus is also found along the Kola Penninsula and in the Far East). The principal component is slime (56-79 percent), which is composed of polysaccharides and swells considerably in water. After it has been boiled and subsequently cooled, carrageen congeals into a gelatinous mass. This seaweed, which is dried during processing, is used in the textile industry for sizing material, in the food industry for clarifying beer, and in the paper industry for preparing suspensions and solutions. It is also used to prevent the settling of suspensions.