A solid decompostion product of a natural or synthetic organic material.
If the precursor has not passed through a fluid stage, char will retain the characteristic shape of the precursor (although becoming of smaller size). For such materials the term 'pseudomorphous
' has been used. Some simple organic compounds, e.g. sugar, melt at an early stage of decomposition
and then polymerize during carbonization
to produce chars.
PAC, 1995, 67, 473
(Recommended terminology for the description of carbon as a solid (IUPAC Recommendations 1995))
on page 484
IUPAC. Compendium of Chemical Terminology, 2nd ed. (the "Gold Book"). Compiled by A. D. McNaught and A. Wilkinson. Blackwell Scientific Publications, Oxford (1997). XML on-line corrected version: http://goldbook.iupac.org (2006-) created by M. Nic, J. Jirat, B. Kosata; updates compiled by A. Jenkins. ISBN 0-9678550-9-8. doi:10.1351/goldbook