Diethyl Ether

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diethyl ether

(organic chemistry)
C4H10O A colorless liquid, slightly soluble in water; used as a reagent and solvent. Also known as ethyl ether; ethyl oxide; ethylic ether.

Diethyl Ether


(also ether), (C2H5)2O, the most important ether.

Diethyl ether takes the form of a colorless, mobile liquid with a characteristic odor. It has a melting point of – 116.2°C, a boiling point of 34.6°C, and a density of 0.713 g/cm3 at 20°C. Miscible in all proportions with alcohol and many other organic solvents, it is only 6.6-percent soluble in water at 20°C. It readily dissolves fats. Diethyl ether forms an azeotropic mixture with water; the mixture is 98.74-percent diethyl ether, and it has a boiling point of 34.25°C. Diethyl ether is highly flammable, and it forms explosive mixtures with air in concentrations of 1.71–48.0 percent by volume. Upon storage, it is slowly oxidized by atmospheric oxygen to form explosive peroxide compounds.

Diethyl ether is produced from ethyl alcohol at a temperature of 130°–140°C by the action of sulfuric acid—hence, its trivial name in Russian, sernyi efir (sulfuric ether). It may also be produced at 200°–250°C by the vapor-phase dehydration of ethyl alcohol over aluminum oxide (Al2O3) or potassium alums. Diethyl ether is used in industry as a solvent and extracting agent—for example, in the production of powders, motion-picture film, and photographic film. It also has various laboratory uses (seeGRIGNARD REACTION).

In medicine, two grades of diethyl ether are used—medicinal and highly purified. The former is usually applied externally or used for the preparation of tinctures and extracts; it is occasionally taken internally for vomiting. The latter is inhaled as an anesthetic before surgery or sometimes taken as an enema in the form of an oil to reduce pain during childbirth.

The maximum permissible concentration of diethyl ether vapor in the air is 0.3 mg per liter.

References in periodicals archive ?
We therefore believe that other compounds generated by bacterial metabolism were extracted with diethylether and caused an additional burden on the yeast growth.
Solvent P1 P2 P3 P4 P5 DMF ++ ++ ++ ++ ++ DMSO ++ ++ ++ ++ ++ 1,4-Dioxane ++ ++ ++ ++ ++ n-Hexane -- -- -- -- -- Dichloromethane ++ ++ ++ ++ ++ Diethylether -- -- -- -- -- Methanol -- -- -- -- -- THF ++ ++ ++ ++ ++ EMK ++ ++ ++ +- +- Acetonitrile -- -+ -+ -- -- Ethanol -- -- -- -- -- P1, poly(VBOPE); P2, oxime polymer; P3, TSC polymer; P4, hydrazone polymers; P5, sulfonic acid hydrazone polymer; ++, soluble at room temperature; +-, swelling or party soluble at room temperature; -+, swelling or party soluble by heating; -, insoluble.
The plate was developed using diethylether as developer to a liquid front of 12 cm from the baseline in an equilibrated tank.
The products were filtered hot, washed several times with hot EtOH followed by diethylether and finally dried in a vacuum desiccator over anhydrous Ca[Cl.
We measured testosterone after performing diethylether extraction with an in-house RIA using a polyclonal antitestosterone-antibody (AZG 3290; a gift from Dr.
Wood extractives sare primarily low molecular weight compounds that are easily extracted by solvents such as acetone, alcohol, diethylether, dichloromethane, benzene, or water.
Dichloromethane, diethylether, sodium bicarbonate and disodium hydrogen phosphate were purchased from Fisher Chemicals (Loughborough, UK).