methanol


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methanol,

 

methyl alcohol,

or

wood alcohol,

CH3OH, a colorless, flammable liquid that is miscible with water in all proportions. Methanol is a monohydric alcoholalcohol,
any of a class of organic compounds with the general formula R-OH, where R represents an alkyl group made up of carbon and hydrogen in various proportions and -OH represents one or more hydroxyl groups.
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. It melts at −97.8°C; and boils at 67°C;. It reacts with certain acids to form methyl esters. Methanol is a fatal poison. Small internal doses, continued inhalation of the vapor, or prolonged exposure of the skin to the liquid may cause blindness. As a result, commercial use of methanol has sometimes been prohibited. Methanol is used as a solvent for varnishes and lacquers, as an antifreeze, and as a gasoline extender in the production of gasoholgasohol,
a gasoline extender made from a mixture of gasoline (90%) and ethanol (10%; often obtained by fermenting agricultural crops or crop wastes) or gasoline (97%) and methanol, or wood alcohol (3%).
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. Large amounts of it are used in the synthesis of formaldehydeformaldehyde
, HCHO, the simplest aldehyde. It melts at −92°C;, boils at −21°C;, and is soluble in water, alcohol, and ether; at STP, it is a flammable, poisonous, colorless gas with a suffocating odor.
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. Because of its poisonous properties, methanol is also used as a denaturant for ethanol. Methanol is often called wood alcohol because it was once produced chiefly as a byproduct of the destructive distillation of wood. It is now produced synthetically by the direct combination of hydrogen and carbon monoxide gases, heated under pressure in the presence of a catalyst.

methanol

[′meth·ə‚nȯl]
(organic chemistry)

methanol

a colourless volatile poisonous liquid compound used as a solvent and fuel. Formula: CH3OH
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