Chemical & Petrochemicals

Methanol

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Methanol, sometimes called “wood alcohol,” is a clear liquid with the chemical formula CH3OH and often abbreviated MeOH. It is clear liquid with polar properties, making it a good solvent. It is also highly flammable, and highly toxic to humans if ingested.

After scientists discovered methanol and its uses, humans began to produce methanol for industrial purposes using a much faster process of combining carbon monoxide, carbon dioxide, and hydrogen gases along with a copper-based catalyst that prompts these raw materials to combine to form methanol.

What is Methanol Used For?

Methanol has many industrial and scientific uses. One of the most common uses of methanol is as an ingredient for formaldehyde. This chemical which can be derived from methanol is used extensively in the production of plastics, including those used in construction materials, car parts, paints, explosives, and wrinkle-resistant artificial fabrics. Formaldehyde is also used by morticians and scientists to preserve corpses and laboratory specimens.

Methanol can be used to make other useful solvents including acetic acid, dimethyl ether, and propylene, which is used in anti-freeze. Methanol itself can also be an ingredient in anti-freeze.

Fuel for both gasoline-powered and biodiesel vehicles can include methanol. Its highly flammable nature and usefulness as a solvent allow it to assist other fuels in blending and igniting.

Download the Methanol analysis here:

  1. Methanol (CH3OH)

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