Definition of phosphine in English:

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Pronunciation: /ˈfäsfēn/


A colorless foul-smelling gaseous compound of phosphorus and hydrogen, analogous to ammonia, widely used as an insecticidal fumigant in agricultural products.
  • Chemical formula: PH3. It forms salts containing the phosphonium ion, PH4+.
Example sentences
  • The two main alternatives for methyl bromide in pesticides are ‘integrated commodity management’ and fumigation, which uses phosphine and carbon dioxide to kill the pests.
  • The inorganic compound phosphine is very similar to ammonia in its substitution reactions.
  • Since the explosion yesterday morning, which jammed a main cargo door shut, gases including hydrogen, phosphine and arsine, a derivative of arsenic, have started venting from the cargo hold.


Late 19th century: from phospho- 'relating to phosphorus' + -ine4, on the pattern of amine.

For editors and proofreaders

Syllabification: phos·phine

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