Ammonium cyanate – Definition & Meaning

Ammonium cyanate is a chemical compound that has been the subject of much scientific research and discussion. It is a white crystalline substance that is highly soluble in water and has a pungent odor. In this article, we will explore the definition and meaning of ammonium cyanate, its origin, and its associations.


Ammonium cyanate is a salt formed by the reaction of ammonia and cyanic acid. Its chemical formula is NH4OCN, and it is also known as urea ammonium cyanate. It is an isomer of urea, which has the same chemical formula but a different structure.


Ammonium cyanate was first synthesized in 1828 by Friedrich Wöhler, a German chemist. He discovered that it could be produced by heating a mixture of silver cyanate and ammonium chloride. This was a significant discovery because it disproved the theory of vitalism, which held that organic compounds could only be produced by living organisms.

Meaning in different dictionaries

According to the Merriam-Webster dictionary, ammonium cyanate is defined as “a salt NH4OCN that is isomeric with urea and is used especially in the synthesis of urea and other organic compounds.” The Oxford English Dictionary defines it as “a white crystalline compound used in the manufacture of urea and other organic compounds.”


Ammonium cyanate is associated with the synthesis of urea and other organic compounds. It is also used in the production of plastics, pharmaceuticals, and fertilizers. In addition, it has been studied for its potential use in the treatment of certain medical conditions, such as cancer.


Some synonyms of ammonium cyanate include urea ammonium cyanate, cyanic acid ammonium salt, and ammonium isocyanate.


There are no direct antonyms of ammonium cyanate, as it is a chemical compound with a specific definition.

The same root words

Ammonium cyanate shares the root word “ammonium” with other chemical compounds such as ammonium chloride and ammonium nitrate. It also shares the root word “cyanate” with other compounds such as silver cyanate and potassium cyanate.

Example Sentences

  1. The synthesis of urea from ammonium cyanate was a groundbreaking discovery in the field of chemistry.
  2. Ammonium cyanate is often used in the production of plastics and other organic compounds.
  3. The potential medical applications of ammonium cyanate are still being studied by researchers.
  4. Silver cyanate can be converted into ammonium cyanate through a chemical reaction.
  5. The structure of ammonium cyanate is similar to that of urea, which is found in urine and other bodily fluids.
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