1. n. 
A linear, nonionic polymer made of acrylamide monomers, CH2=CHCONH2 . High molecular-weight polyacrylamides are used as selective flocculants in clear-water drilling, low-solids muds and wastewater cleanup. Polymers made of smaller molecules are used as clay deflocculants in water muds, which can contain hardness ions. Polyacrylamides are not nearly as sensitive to salinity and hardness as the anionic polyacrylates (SPA). Also, being nonionic, they are not as powerful for flocculation or deflocculation applications. Acrylamide polymers are, however, susceptible to hydrolysis and release ammonia under hot, alkaline conditions.
See: acrylamide acrylate polymer, acrylamido-methyl-propane sulfonate polymer, acrylate polymer, clay extender, clear-water drilling, colloidal solids, deflocculant, flocculant, low-solids mud, PHPA mud, vinyl polymer, water clarification