Propanediol (Laboratory Use)

26th October 2018

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An image showing Propanediol (Laboratory Use) in a 2.5litre container

Looking for Propanediol for Laboratory Use?

  • We supply propanediol in 25L containers, as well as 200L drums and 1,000L IBC’s.
  • Discounts available for bulk orders
  • We also supply propanediol for general use

Chemical and physical properties of propanediol

With the formula C3H8O2, propanediol, also known as propane-1,2-diol or propylene glycol, is a colourless viscous with a faint sweet taste. From a chemical point of view, it is classed as a diol and it can be mixed with a wide range of solvents, such as acetone, chloroform and water.

It’s non-corrosive and due to its low toxicity is a popular compound in many industrial uses. This is in contrast with closely related ethylene glycol, which is commonly used in antifreeze, which can be toxic to humans and animals.

This chemical contains an asymmetrical carbon, so it can exist in two different forms (two enantiomers). Commercial versions are typically a mixture of both forms, but pure optical isomers can be obtained in the presence of pure propylene oxide. These versions are extremely expensive and are only used for niche applications.

How is propanediol produced?

Propanediol is synthesised from propylene oxide, but the reaction can be done in different ways:

  • reaction at 200-220 degree Celsius (non-catalytic)
  • reaction at 150-180 degree Celsius (in the presence of ion exchange resin or sulphuric acid as catalysts)

The resultant solution contains about 20% propylene glycol, and small amounts of dipropylene glycol and other glycols. Further purification steps are necessary to reach 99.5% solutions

Alternatively, propanediol can also be produced from glycerol, typically a by-product from biodiesel manufacture. This process is used to produce lower grade propanediol only to be used in industrial process.

100% quality guarantee

All our products come with 100% quality guarantee and are usually shipped within 24 hours after purchase. We offer a wide range of products, from petrochemicals to pharmaceuticals, as well as bespoke solutions to cover all your needs. Contact us for further information or free technical advice.

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