The process of thro%ving down solids from the liquids which hold them in solution. It is usually effected by chemic reaction. Precipitates are crystalline, amorphous, curdy, flocculent, granular, or “gelatinous, according to the form assumed. The agent causing precipitation is the precipitant, the solid thrown down, the precipitate. P., Fractional, the process employed in separating a mixture of fatty acids by the addition of small portions of the acetate of a heavy metal. The precipitate consists of a combination of the metal with a large proportion of the less volatile acid and a small proportion of the more volatile acid. In the filtrate the proportions are reversed. The metal is separated from the less volatile acid by dissolving the precipitate in hydrochloric acid. The process is repeated until finally the filtrate contains practically only the more volatile acid, and the precipitate only the less volatile acid. P., Partial, a process of separating two soluble salts by precipitation of a portion of each, and subsequent decomposition of the precipitate. The latter is redissolved and again precipitated.

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Definition of  PRECIPITATION