Definition of adipic acid in English:

adipic acid


mass nounChemistry
  • A crystalline fatty acid obtained from natural fats and used especially in the manufacture of nylon.

    Alternative name: hexanedioic acid; chemical formula: HOOC(CH₂)₄COOH

    • ‘W. H. Carothers of E. I. DuPont de Nemours first produced nylon in 1931 from hexamethylenediamine and adipic acid, a six-carbon amine and a six-carbon acid.’
    • ‘Nylon 66 is a polyamide based on hexamethylene diamine and adipic acid.’
    • ‘The last step of adipic acid synthesis involves nitric acid oxidation, resulting in the formation of nitrous oxide as a byproduct.’
    • ‘For example, polyesters are created by the reaction of a dihydric alcohol, such as ethylene glycol, which contains two hydroxyl groups and a diacid, like adipic acid, containing two carboxyl groups.’
    • ‘When adipic acid is manufactured from petroleum, huge amounts of ozone depleting nitrous oxide, N 2 O, are produced.’


Mid 19th century: from Latin adeps, adip- ‘fat’ (because the acid was first prepared by oxidizing fats) + -ic.


adipic acid