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[n. kahr-buh-neyt, -nit; v. kahr-buh-neyt] /n. ˈkɑr bəˌneɪt, -nɪt; v. ˈkɑr bəˌneɪt/
a salt or ester of carbonic acid.
verb (used with object), carbonated, carbonating.
to form into a carbonate.
to charge or impregnate with carbon dioxide:
carbonated drinks.
to make sprightly; enliven.
Origin of carbonate
1785-95; carbon(ic acid) + -ate2, later taken as -ate1
Related forms
carbonator, noun
noncarbonate, noun
noncarbonated, adjective
semicarbonate, adjective
uncarbonated, adjective Unabridged
Based on the Random House Dictionary, © Random House, Inc. 2015.
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Examples from the web for carbonate
  • We've seen carbonation in bottles after a week, but in general it takes two weeks for beer to carbonate fully.
  • In reefs, all the builders die: the bricks are calcium carbonate shells.
  • The key ingredient is limestone, mostly calcium carbonate, the remains of shelled marine creatures.
  • The chalk is mostly calcium carbonate from coccoliths, the skeletal remains of plankton and algae.
  • The team studied the saturation levels of aragonite, a form of calcium carbonate that drops as acidity of seawater rises.
  • If the level of carbonate ions falls too low the shells can dissolve or might never be made at all.
  • Shelled creatures, whose calcium-carbonate-rich armour tends to dissolve in acid, suddenly became rare.
  • carbonate building in seawater depends in carbonate saturation.
  • Corals too started combining the calcium and carbonate that was floating freely in the water to construct reefs.
  • The primary source of calcite, or calcium carbonate, is the secretions of certain sea creatures.
British Dictionary definitions for carbonate


noun (ˈkɑːbəˌneɪt; -nɪt)
a salt or ester of carbonic acid. Carbonate salts contain the divalent ion CO32–
verb (ˈkɑːbəˌneɪt)
to form or turn into a carbonate
(transitive) to treat with carbon dioxide or carbonic acid, as in the manufacture of soft drinks
Word Origin
C18: from French, from carbonecarbon
Collins English Dictionary - Complete & Unabridged 2012 Digital Edition
© William Collins Sons & Co. Ltd. 1979, 1986 © HarperCollins
Publishers 1998, 2000, 2003, 2005, 2006, 2007, 2009, 2012
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Word Origin and History for carbonate

1794, from French carbonate "salt of carbonic acid" (Lavoisier), from Modern Latin carbonatem "a carbonated (substance)," from Latin carbo (see carbon).


1805, "to form into a carbonate," from carbonate (n.) by influence of French carbonater "transform into a carbonate." Meaning "to impregnate with carbonic acid gas (i.e. carbon dioxide)" is from 1850s. Related: Carbonated; carbonating.

Online Etymology Dictionary, © 2010 Douglas Harper
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carbonate in Medicine

carbonate car·bon·ate (kär'bə-nāt')
A salt or ester of carbonic acid.

The American Heritage® Stedman's Medical Dictionary
Copyright © 2002, 2001, 1995 by Houghton Mifflin Company. Published by Houghton Mifflin Company.
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carbonate in Science
  1. A salt or ester of carbonic acid, containing the group CO3. The reaction of carbonic acid with a metal results in a salt (such as sodium carbonate), and the reaction of carbonic acid with an organic compound results in an ester (such as diethyl carbonate).

  2. Any other compound containing the group CO3. Carbonates include minerals such as calcite and aragonite.

  3. Sediment or a sedimentary rock formed by the precipitation of organic or inorganic carbon from an aqueous solution of carbonates of calcium, magnesium, or iron. Limestone is a carbonate rock.

Verb  To add carbon dioxide to a substance, such as a beverage.
The American Heritage® Science Dictionary
Copyright © 2002. Published by Houghton Mifflin. All rights reserved.
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