tetraethyl lead


noun Chemistry.
a colorless, oily, water-insoluble, poisonous liquid, (C 2 H 5 ) 4 Pb, used as an antiknock agent in gasoline.
Also, tetraethyl lead.
Also called lead tetraethyl, TEL.

1920–25; tetraethyl + lead2

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World English Dictionary
tetraethyl lead (ˌtɛtrəˈiːθaɪl lɛd)
Systematic name: lead tetraethyl a colourless oily insoluble liquid used in petrol to prevent knocking. Formula: Pb(C2H5)4

Collins English Dictionary - Complete & Unabridged 10th Edition
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American Heritage
Medical Dictionary

tetraethyl lead tet·ra·eth·yl lead or tet·ra·eth·yl·lead (tět'rə-ěth'əl-lěd')
A colorless, poisonous, oily liquid used in gasoline for internal-combustion engines as an antiknock agent.

The American Heritage® Stedman's Medical Dictionary
Copyright © 2002, 2001, 1995 by Houghton Mifflin Company. Published by Houghton Mifflin Company.
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American Heritage
Science Dictionary
tetraethyl lead   (tět'rə-ěth'əl)  Pronunciation Key 
A colorless, poisonous, oily liquid, formerly in wide use as an antiknock agent in gasoline for internal-combustion engines. Chemical formula: C8H20Pb.
The American Heritage® Science Dictionary
Copyright © 2002. Published by Houghton Mifflin. All rights reserved.
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Encyclopedia Britannica

tetraethyl lead

organometallic compound that is the chief antiknock agent for automotive fuels. Manufactured by the action of ethyl chloride on a powdered alloy of lead and sodium, the compound is a dense, colourless liquid that is quite volatile, boiling at about 200 C (400 F). As an antidetonant (i.e., antiknock agent), tetraethyl lead is added to gasoline in quantities not exceeding 3 cubic cm (0.2 cubic inch) per gallon; a small quantity of ethylene dibromide and sometimes ethylene dichloride is added to prevent accumulation of lead deposits in the engine. Tetraethyl lead can cause acute or chronic lead poisoning if inhaled or absorbed through the skin. Its use declined markedly during the 1970s because the products of its combustion are toxic and detrimental to catalytic devices that were introduced to nullify other objectionable components of the exhaust gases of engines.

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Encyclopedia Britannica, 2008. Encyclopedia Britannica Online.
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