from The American Heritage® Dictionary of the English Language, 4th Edition
- n. A sulfur-containing organic compound with the general formula RSH where R is any radical, especially ethyl mercaptan, C2H5SH. Also called thiol.
from Wiktionary, Creative Commons Attribution/Share-Alike License
- n. Any of a class of organic compounds of sulphur, ( R1.S.R2 ); they tend to be foul-smelling. When R2 is a hydrogen atom, they are termed thiols or thioalcohols.
from the GNU version of the Collaborative International Dictionary of English
- n. Any one of series of compounds having an -SH radical attached to a carbon atom, also considered as hydrosulphides of alcohol radicals, in composition resembling the alcohols, but containing sulphur in place of oxygen, and hence called also the sulphur alcohols. In general, they are colorless liquids having a strong, repulsive, garlic odor. The name is specifically applied to ethyl mercaptan, C2H5SH. So called from its avidity for mercury, and other metals.
from The Century Dictionary and Cyclopedia
- n. One of a class of compounds analogous to alcohols, in which the group SH takes the place of hydroxyl.
"In case you weren't aware, methyl mercaptan is commonly used as an odorant in natural gas, the better to detect leaks at very low concentrations."
But he did say they happen all the time, and oftentimes they add this chemical called mercaptan so that you can actually detect and smell the natural gas because normally you can't.
One of those compounds is called methyl mercaptan, which is the same chemical which gives a skunk its defensive smell.
The no-smell folks might not be able to detect a compound related to the one in smelly asparagus pee, mercaptan, which is added to natural gas to make it noticeable.
Authors Mark Leyner and Dr. Billy Goldberg not only unravel that mystery (something to do with a sulfur compound called mercaptan), but '' hundreds of questions you'd only ask a doctor after your third martini '' -- which happens to be the book's subtitle.
Sulfur will bind to the mercury and soak it up (why it's also called "mercaptan").
This leak filled the air with mercaptan -- a chemical that is fairly harmless and used to help natural gas leaks.
While its smell is strong and unpleasant, the Occupational Safety and Health Administration assures us that mercaptan is only harmful in high concentrations.
If your breath does smell of rotten cabbage, the best way to eliminate mercaptan and other volatile sulfur-producing compounds is to use oxygenating toothpaste and an oral rinse that doesn't contain alcohol at least twice daily.
The wine that Robert Kenney sent me was not defective int he sense of brett, mercaptan, or any winemaking issue.