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see formaldehydeformaldehyde
, HCHO, the simplest aldehyde. It melts at −92°C;, boils at −21°C;, and is soluble in water, alcohol, and ether; at STP, it is a flammable, poisonous, colorless gas with a suffocating odor.
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The following article is from The Great Soviet Encyclopedia (1979). It might be outdated or ideologically biased.



(also paraform), a mixture of formaldehyde polymerization products, called polyoxymethylenes, of the general formula (—CH2O—)n where n is any integer from eight to 100. Paraformaldehyde is a white, crystalline substance with a melting range between 105° and 150°C. It is obtained by evaporating concentrated, aqueous solutions of formaldehyde in vacuo. Paraformaldehyde is a convenient source of formaldehyde.

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


(organic chemistry)
(HCHO)n Polymer of formaldehyde where n is greater than 6; white, alkali-soluble solid, insoluble in alcohol, ether, and water; used as a disinfectant, fumigant, and fungicide, and to make resins.
McGraw-Hill Dictionary of Scientific & Technical Terms, 6E, Copyright © 2003 by The McGraw-Hill Companies, Inc.