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A brittle synthetic polymer composed of repeated styrene units. Polystyrene is transparent and rigid because the benzene rings in each styrene unit prevent the polystyrene chains from arranging themselves into a tight crystalline structure. Polystyrene has a wide variety of uses, especially as a solid foam for insulation and packaging.
an important member of the class of synthetic organic polymers, composed of long-chain molecules prepared by a chemical reaction in which many (usually 2,000-3,000) molecules of the aromatic hydrocarbon styrene become linked together.