Propylene carbonate

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Propylene carbonate

Propylene carbonate (PC), also known as cyclic propylene carbonate, carbonic acid propylene ester, cyclic 1,2-propylene carbonate, propylene glycol cyclic carbonate, 1,2-propanediol carbonate, and 4-methyl-2-oxo-1,3-dioxolane is an organic chemical, an ester of propylene glycol and carbonic acid. It is a colorless odorless liquid with melting point of -55 °C and boiling point of 241.7 °C. It is combustible, with flash point 132 °C and autoignition temperature of 455 °C. Density is 1.205 and has a MW of 102.10. It is chemically stable. Its CAS number is [108-32-7] and its SMILES structure is CC(CO1)OC1=O. Some of its trade names are eg. Arconate 5000 and Texacar PC.

Propylene carbonate is an irritant. May be harmful if inhaled. Its risk and safety phrases are R36 S26 S36. At high temperatures it decomposes to carbon dioxide and propylene oxide. In presence of water it decomposes to carbon dioxide and propylene glycol.

Propylene carbonate is used as a polar, aprotic solvent, though is less frequently used than DMF or DMSO. It is frequently used as a high-permittivity component of electrolytes in lithium batteries, usually together with a low-viscosity solvent (eg. dimethoxyethane). It can also be found in some adhesives, paint strippers, and in some cosmetics. [1]

Propylene carbonate is also used as plasticizer.

Propylene carbonate is a byproduct of the synthesis of polypropylene carbonate from propylene oxide and carbon dioxide. It can be intentionally manufactured from the same feedstocks, using different reaction conditions. It can be also synthetized from eg. urea and propylene glycol over zinc-iron double oxide catalyst.

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