verb (used with object), vul·can·ized, vul·can·iz·ing.

  1. to treat (rubber) with sulfur and heat, thereby imparting strength, greater elasticity, durability, etc.
  2. to subject (a substance other than rubber) to some analogous process, as to harden it.

verb (tr)

  1. to treat (rubber) with sulphur or sulphur compounds under heat and pressure to improve elasticity and strength or to produce a hard substance such as vulcanite
  2. to treat (substances other than rubber) by a similar process in order to improve their properties

1827, “to put into flames,” from Vulcan (q.v.), name of the Roman god of fire, + -ize. As a treatment for rubber, first recorded 1846. Related: Vulcanized; vulcanizing.

  1. To harden rubber by combining it with sulfur or other substances in the presence of heat and pressure. Vulcanization gives rubber strength, resistance, and elasticity.
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