Matter & Energy

Matter is composed of atoms or groups of atoms called molecules. The arrangement of particles in a material depends on the physical state of the substance. In a solid, particles form a compact structure that resists flow. Particles in a liquid have more energy than those in a solid. They can flow past one another, but they remain close. Particles in a gas have the most energy. They move rapidly and are separated from one another by relatively large distances.

Types of Alcohol

Methyl (wood alcohol, methanol)
Manufacture: By destructive distillation of wood. Also by synthesis from hydrogen and carbon monoxide under high pressure.
Uses: Solvent for fats, oils, resins, nitrocellulose. Manufacture of dyes, formaldehyde, antifreeze solutions, special fuels, plastics.

Ethyl (grain alcohol, ethanol)
Manufacture: By fermentation of sugar, starch, or waste sulfite liquor. Synthesis from ethylene or acetylene. Direct hydration of ethylene.
Uses: Solvent for products such as lacquers, paints, varnishes, glues, pharmaceuticals, explosives. Also as "building block" in making high-molecular-weight chemicals.

Isopropyl (isopropanol)
Manufacture: By hydration of propylene from cracked gases. Also as by-product of certain fermentation processes.
Uses: Solvent for oils, gums, alkaloids, resins. Making acetone, soap, antiseptic solutions.

Normal propyl
Manufacture: As a coproduct of air oxidation of propane and butane mixtures.
Uses: Solvent for lacquers, resins, coatings, films, waxes. Also as brake fluid, in manufacture of propionic acid, plasticizers.

Butyl (n-butanol)
Manufacture: By fermentation of starch or sugar. Also by synthesis, using ethyl alcohol or acetylene.
Uses: Solvent for nitrocellulose, ethyl cellulose, lacquer, urea-formaldehyde, urea-melamine plastics. Diluent of hydraulic fluids, extractant of drugs.

Manufacture: By synthesis from carbon monoxide and hydrogen at high pressure, then distillation from products formed.
Uses: Solvent for castor-oil-base brake fluids. Substitute for n-butyl alcohol in making urea resins.

Secondary butyl
Manufacture: By hydration of 1-butane, formed in petroleum cracking.
Uses: In making other chemicals such as methyl ethyl ketone. Solvent in nitrocellulose lacquers. Production of brake fluids, special greases.

Tertiary butyl
Manufacture: By hydration of isobutylene, derived from petroleum cracking.
Uses: In perfume making. As wetting agent in detergents. Solvent for drugs and cleaning compounds.

Amyl (pentyl)
Manufacture: By fractional distillation of fusel oil, a coproduct of ethyl alcohol manufacture by fermentation.
Uses: Solvent for many natural and synthetic resins. Diluting brake fluids, printing inks, lacquers. In medicinal products.

Ethylene glycol
Manufacture: By oxidation of ethylene to glycol. Also by hydrogenation of methyl glycolate made from formaldehyde and methanol.
Uses: Deicing fluid, antifreeze, brake fluid. In production of explosives. Solvent for stains, oils, resins, enamels, inks, dyes.

Diethylene glycol
Manufacture: As coproduct in manufacture of ethylene glycol.
Uses: Solvent for dyes, resins. Antileak agent. In gas drying. Softening agent in adhesive printing inks.

Triethylene glycol
Manufacture: Coproduct in manufacture of ethylene glycol.
Uses: Air disinfectant and dehumidifier. Production of resins, plasticizers.

Glycerol (glycerin; 1-, 2-, 3-propanetriol)
Manufacture: From treatment of fats in soapmaking. Synthetically, from propylene. By fermentation.
Uses: In alkyd resins, explosives, cellophane. Tobacco humectant.

Manufacture: By condensation of acetaldehyde and formaldehyde.
Uses: In synthetic resins. As tetranitrate in explosives. Also as drug for treatment of heart disease.

Manufacture: By reduction of sugar, usually corn sugar, with hydrogen.
Uses: In foods, pharmaceuticals, in chemical manufacture. Conditioning agent in paper, textiles, glue, cosmetics. Source of alcohol in resin manufacture.

Manufacture: By catalytic hydrogenation of phenol. By catalytic air oxidation of cyclohexane.
Uses: Intermediate in making chemicals used in nylon manufacture. Stabilizer and homogenizer of soaps, synthetic detergents. Solvent.

Manufacture: By synthesis from benzene and ethylene oxide.
Uses: Principally in perfumes.