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Chemical Name:
Molecular Formula:
Formula Weight:
MOL File:


Melting point:
−111 °C(lit.)
Boiling point:
10.7 °C(lit.)
0.882 g/mL at 25 °C(lit.)
refractive index 
n20/D 1.3597(lit.)
Flash point:
storage temp. 
CAS DataBase Reference
75-21-8(CAS DataBase Reference)
  • Risk and Safety Statements
  • Hazard and Precautionary Statements (GHS)
Hazard Codes  F+,T,F
Risk Statements  45-46-12-23-36/37/38-39/23/24/25-23/24/25-11-67-20-36/37-19-6
Safety Statements  53-45-36/37-16-24/25-23-26
RIDADR  UN 2037 2.3
WGK Germany  2
RTECS  KX2450000
HazardClass  2.3
HS Code  29101000
Signal word: Danger
Hazard statements:
Code Hazard statements Hazard class Category Signal word Pictogram P-Codes
H220 Extremely flammable gas Flammable gases Category 1 Danger P210, P377, P381, P403
H225 Highly Flammable liquid and vapour Flammable liquids Category 2 Danger P210,P233, P240, P241, P242, P243,P280, P303+ P361+P353, P370+P378,P403+P235, P501
H280 Contains gas under pressure; may explode if heated Gases under pressure Compressed gas
Liquefied gas
Dissolved gas
Warning P410+P403
H315 Causes skin irritation Skin corrosion/irritation Category 2 Warning P264, P280, P302+P352, P321,P332+P313, P362
H319 Causes serious eye irritation Serious eye damage/eye irritation Category 2A Warning P264, P280, P305+P351+P338,P337+P313P
H331 Toxic if inhaled Acute toxicity,inhalation Category 3 Danger P261, P271, P304+P340, P311, P321,P403+P233, P405, P501
H335 May cause respiratory irritation Specific target organ toxicity, single exposure;Respiratory tract irritation Category 3 Warning
H336 May cause drowsiness or dizziness Specific target organ toxicity,single exposure; Narcotic effects Category 3 Warning P261, P271, P304+P340, P312,P403+P233, P405, P501
H340 May cause genetic defects Germ cell mutagenicity Category 1A, 1B Danger
H350 May cause cancer Carcinogenicity Category 1A, 1B Danger
H370 Causes damage to organs Specific target organ toxicity, single exposure Category 1 Danger P260, P264, P270, P307+P311, P321,P405, P501
Precautionary statements:
P201 Obtain special instructions before use.
P210 Keep away from heat/sparks/open flames/hot surfaces. — No smoking.
P260 Do not breathe dust/fume/gas/mist/vapours/spray.
P261 Avoid breathing dust/fume/gas/mist/vapours/spray.
P280 Wear protective gloves/protective clothing/eye protection/face protection.
P311 Call a POISON CENTER or doctor/physician.
P301+P310 IF SWALLOWED: Immediately call a POISON CENTER or doctor/physician.
P305+P351+P338 IF IN EYES: Rinse cautiously with water for several minutes. Remove contact lenses, if present and easy to do. Continuerinsing.
P308+P313 IF exposed or concerned: Get medical advice/attention.
P370+P378 In case of fire: Use … for extinction.
P403+P235 Store in a well-ventilated place. Keep cool.
P410+P403 Protect from sunlight. Store in a well-ventilated place.

ETHYLENE OXIDE price More Price(7)

Manufacturer Product number Product description CAS number Packaging Price Updated Buy
Sigma-Aldrich 387614 Ethylene oxide ≥99.5% 75-21-8 227g $682 2018-11-20 Buy
Sigma-Aldrich 779202 Ethylene oxide solution 2.5-3.3M in THF 75-21-8 1l $1600 2018-11-20 Buy
Sigma-Aldrich CRM44609 Ethylene oxide solution certified reference material, 500 μg/mL in DMSO, ampule of 1 mL 75-21-8 crm44609 $31.4 2018-11-23 Buy
Sigma-Aldrich CRM47949 Ethylene oxide solution certified reference material, 2000 μg/mL in dichloromethane, ampule of 1 mL 75-21-8 crm47949 $35.8 2018-11-23 Buy
Sigma-Aldrich 48838 Ethylene oxide solution certified reference material, 50 mg/mL in methanol 75-21-8 48838 $45.6 2018-11-23 Buy

ETHYLENE OXIDE Chemical Properties,Uses,Production


Ethylene oxide (C2H4O) is a kind of cyclic ether with important industrial applications. Although it is highly toxic and dangerous for household application and consumers to use, it can be used for the manufacture of many important industrial and commercialized products as well as some chemicals and intermediates. For example, it is very useful in the production of detergents, thickeners, solvents, plastics, and many kinds of organic chemicals such as ethylene glycol, ethanolamines, simple and complex glycols, polyglycol ethers, and other compounds. It is also a commonly sterilization methods used in the healthcare industry. In addition, it can be used as an accelerator of maturation of tobacco leaves and fungicide, as well as the main component of thermobaric weapons (fuel-air explosives). In industry, it is generally manufactured through direct oxidation of ethylene. In low doses, it can be used as a pesticide and a sterilizing agent owing to its effect of causing DNA damage. However, this property also make it a potential carcinogen.

Chemical Properties

Ethylene oxide is the simplest cyclic ether. It is a colorless gas or liquid and has a sweet, etheric odor. Ethylene oxide is a flammable, very reactive and explosive chemical substance. On decomposition, vapors of pure ethylene oxide mix with air or inert gases and become highly explosive. Ethylene oxide, is used in large scale as an intermediate in the production of monoethylene glycol, diethylene glycol, triethylene glycol, poly(ethylene) glycols, ethylene glycol ethers, ethanolamine, ethoxylation products of fatty alcohols, fatty amines, alkyl phenols, cellulose, and poly(propylene glycol). It is also used as a fumigant for food and cosmetics, and in hospital sterilization of surgical equipment and heat sensitive materials.

Chemical Properties

Ethylene oxide is the simplest cyclic ether. It is a colourless gas or liquid and has a sweet, etheric odour. Etylene oxide is a flammable and very reactive and explosive chemical substance. On decomposition, vapours of pure ethylene oxide mix with air or inert gases and become highly explosive. Industrial use of ethylene oxide is extensive, as an intermediate in the production of monoethylene glycol, diethylene glycol, triethylene glycol, poly(ethylene) glycols, ethylene glycol ethers, ethanolamine, ethoxylation products of fatty alcohols, fatty amines, alkyl phenols, cellulose, and poly(propylene glycol). It is also used as a fumigant fungicide and insecticide, in the sterilisation of surgical instruments/ equipments and heat-sensitive materials in the hospital, in the sterilisation/fumigation of some imported foods, in the fumigation of books and archival materials in museums, and in the fumigation of furs, textiles, and furniture.

Chemical Properties

Ethylene oxide is a colorless, compressed, liquefied gas or liquid (below 11℃). Sweet odor; the odor threshold is 50 ppm.


Fumigant for foodstuffs and textiles; to sterilize surgical instruments; agricultural fungicide. In organic syntheses, especially in the production of ethylene glycol. Starting material for the manufacture of acrylonitrile and nonionic surfactants.


ChEBI: A saturated organic heteromonocyclic parent that is a three-membered heterocycle of two carbon atoms and one oxygen atom.

General Description

A clear colorless gas with an ethereal odor. Flash point below 0°F. May polymerize exothermically if heated or contaminated. If the polymerization takes place inside a container, the container may rupture violently. Vapors may burn inside a container. Vapors irritate the eyes, skin, and respiratory system. Prolonged skin contact may result in delayed burns. Less dense than water. Vapors heavier than air. Vapors very toxic. Under prolonged exposure to fire or heat the containers may rupture violently and rocket. Used to make other chemicals, as a fumigant and industrial sterilant (AAR, 1999).

Air & Water Reactions

Highly flammable. Flammable over a wide vapor-air concentration range. Must be diluted on the order of 24 to 1 with water to lose flammability. Soluble in water.

Reactivity Profile

Colorless gas at room temperature (b.p. 11°C), confirmed carcinogen. Highly flammable, severe explosion hazard when exposed to flame. The autoignition temperature may be as low as 140° C in presence of rust. Rapid compression of the vapor with air causes explosion. ETHYLENE OXIDE vapor may be initiated into explosive decomposition in absence of air [Hess, L. G., et al., Ind. Eng. Chem., 1950, 42, p. 1251]. Metal fittings containing magnesium, copper or silver should be avoided, since traces of acetylene in ETHYLENE OXIDE may produce metal acetylides capable of detonating the vapor [MCA SD-38, 1971]. Violent polymerization occurs on contact with strong bases (alkali hydroxides, ammonia) or acids, amines, metallic potassium, oxides (aluminum oxide, iron oxide, rust), covalent halides (aluminum chloride, ferric chloride, tin(IV) chloride) [Gupta, A. K., J. Soc. Chem. Ind., 1949, 68, p. 179]. Violent reaction with m-nitroaniline, magnesium perchlorate, mercaptans, thiols, triethylamine [Bretherick, 5th ed., 1995, p. 316]. ETHYLENE OXIDE and SO2 can react violently in pyridine solution with pressurization if ETHYLENE OXIDE is in excess (Nolan, 1983, Case History 51).


Irritant to eyes and skin. Confirmed carcinogen. Highly flammable, dangerous fire and explosion risk, flammable limits in air 3–100%.

Health Hazard

Ethylene oxide is toxic by inhalation. Symptoms of overexposure include headache, dizziness, lethargy, behavioral disturbances, weakness, cyanosis, loss of sensation in the extremities, reduction in the sense of smell and/or taste, progressing with increasing exposure to convulsions, seizure and coma. Ethylene oxide is also an irritant to the skin and the respiratory tract, and inhaling the vapors may cause the lungs to fi ll with fl uid several hours after exposure. Inhalation may cause dizziness or drowsiness. Liquid contact may cause frostbite, and an allergic skin reaction. After oral exposure (ingestion) to ethylene oxide, laboratory animals show adverse effects in the blood, damage to the liver, kidneys, reproductive effects, miscarriages/spontaneous abortion, and cancer

Health Hazard

ETHYLENE OXIDE can cause death. Lowest inhalation concentration causing toxic effects is 12500 ppm/10 seconds. It is a strong skin irritant. Neurological disorders and even death have been reported.

Health Hazard

Ethylene oxide is a severe irritant to the eyes, skin, and respiratory tract and exhibits moderate acute toxicity by all routes of exposure. Symptoms of overexposure by inhalation may be delayed and can include nausea, vomiting, headache, drowsiness, and difficulty breathing. Ethylene oxide can cause serious burns to the skin, which may only appear after a delay of 1 to 5 hours. This substance may also be absorbed through the skin to cause the systemic effects listed above. Eye contact can result in severe burns. Ethylene oxide is not considered to have adequate warning properties. Ethylene oxide is listed by IARC in Group 2A ("probable human carcinogen") and is classified as a "select carcinogen" under the criteria of the OSHA Laboratory Standard. There is some evidence from animal studies that ethylene oxide may be a developmental and reproductive toxin in both males and females. Exposure to this substance may lead to sensitization.

Fire Hazard

Ethylene oxide is an extremely flammable substance (NFPA rating = 4). Ethylene oxide vapor may be ignited by hot surfaces such as hot plates and static electricity discharges, and since the vapor is heavier than air, it may travel a considerable distance to an ignition source and flash back. Ethylene oxide vapor forms explosive mixtures with air at concentrations of 3 to 100% (by volume). Carbon dioxide or dry chemical extinguishers should be used for ethylene oxide fires. Ethylene oxide may explode when heated in a closed vessel.

Fire Hazard

Severe explosion hazard when exposed to heat or flame. Irritating vapors are generated when heated. Vapor is heavier than air and may travel considerable distance to a source of ignition and flash back. Vapor forms explosive mixtures with air over a wide range. Liquid is not detonable but the vapor may be readily initiated into explosive decomposition. Avoid metal fittings containing copper, silver, mercury or magnesium; ammonia, oxidizing agents; acids, organic bases; amines; certain salts; alcohols; mercaptans, ferric chloride; magnesium perchlorate; m-nitroaniline; trimethylamine, potassium, tin chlorides; alkanethiols; bromoethane; aluminum chloride; aluminum oxide; iron chlorides; and iron oxides. Avoid air, heat, acids and bases, metal or metal chloride catalysts. Hazardous polymerization may occur. Avoid acids; covalent halides such as chlorides of aluminum, iron (III), tin (IV); basic materials like alkali hydrides, ammonia, amines, and potassium; catalytically active solids such as aluminum or iron oxides or rust, chlorides of boron, aluminum, tin, and iron; some carbonates; and metals such as copper and copper alloys

Agricultural Uses

Fungicide and fumigant: Ethylene oxide is used as a fumigant for spices, seasonings, and foodstuffs and as an agricultural fungicide. When used directly in the gaseous form or in nonexplosive gaseous mixtures with nitrogen or carbon dioxide, ethylene oxide can act as a disinfectant, fumigant, sterilizing agent, and insecticide. It is a man-made chemical used as an intermediate in organic synthesis for ethylene glycol, polyglycols, glycol ethers, esters, ethanolamines, acrylonitrile, plastics, and surface-active agents. It is also used as a fumigant for textiles and for sterilization, especially for surgical instruments. It is used in drug synthesis and as a pesticide intermediate. Not approved for use in EU countries. Actively registered in the U.S.

Trade name


Contact allergens

Ethylene oxide is a very strong irritant widely used in the chemical industry, and as a sterilizer of medical supplies, pharmaceutical products, and food. It can produce immediate (urticaria, asthma, anaphylaxis) or delayed reactions (irritant rather than allergic contact dermatitis). For example, residues in masks or dressings can produce irritant contact dermatitis.In delayed contact allergy, it seems that cross-reaction can be observed to epichlorhydrin or epoxypropane

Safety Profile

Confirmed human carcinogen with experimental carcinogenic, tumorigenic, neoplastigenic, and teratogenic data. Poison by ingestion, intraperitoneal, subcutaneous, and intravenous routes. Moderately toxic by inhalation. Human systemic effects by inhalation: convulsions, nausea, vomiting, olfactory and pulmonary changes. Experimental reproductive effects. Mutation data reported. A skin and eye irritant. An irritant to mucous membranes of respiratory tract. High concentrations can cause pulmonary edema. Highly flammable liquid or gas. Severe explosion hazard when exposed to flame. To fight fire, use alcohol foam, CO2, dry chemical. Violent polymerization occurs on contact with ammonia, alkali hydroxides, amines, metalllc potassium, acids, covalent halides (e.g., aluminum chloride, iron(Ⅲ) chloride, tin(rv> chloride, aluminum oxide, iron oxide, rust). Explosive reaction with glycerol at 200℃. Rapid compression of the vapor with air causes explosions. Incompatible with bases, alcohols, air, m-nitroanlline, trimethyl amine, copper, iron chlorides, iron oxides, magnesium perchlorate, mercaptans, potassium, tin chlorides, contaminants, alkane thols, bromoethane. When heated to decomposition it emits acrid smoke and irritating fumes.

Potential Exposure

Ethylene oxide is a man-made chemical used in the production of glycols (ethylene glycol, polyglycols, glycol ethers, esters), nontonic surface-active agent; ethanolamines, acrylonitrile, plastics. It is also used as a fumigant for foodstuffs and textiles; an agricultural fungicide; and for sterilization, especially for surgical instruments. It is used in drug synthesis and as a pesticide intermediate

First aid

If ethylene oxide gets into the eyes, remove any contact lenses at once and irrigate immediately for at least 15 minutes, occasionally lifting upper and lower lids. Seek medical attention immediately. If this chemical contacts the skin, remove contaminated clothing and wash immediately with soap and water. Seek medical attention immediately. If this chemical has been inhaled, remove from exposure, begin rescue breathing (using universal precautions, including resuscitation mask) if breathing has stopped and CPR if heart action has stopped. Transfer promptly to a medical facility. When this chemical has been swallowed, get medical attention. Give large quantities of water and induce vomiting. Do not make an unconscious person vomit. If frostbite has occurred, seek medical attention immediately; do NOT rub the affected areas or flush them with water. In order to prevent further tissue damage, do NOT attempt to remove frozen clothing from frostbitten areas. If frostbite has NOT occurred, immediately and thoroughly wash contaminated skin with soap and water. Medical observation is recommended for 24 to 48 hours after breathing overexposure, as pulmonary edema may be delayed. As first aid for pulmonary edema, a doctor or authorized paramedic may consider administering a drug or other inhalation therapy.


UN1040 Ethylene oxide or Ethylene oxide with nitrogen up to a total pressure of 1 MPa (10 bar) at 50℃, Hazard Class: 2.3; Labels: 2.3-Poisonous gas, 2.1- Flammable gas, Inhalation Hazard Zone D. Cylinders must be transported in a secure upright position, in a wellventilated truck. Protect cylinder and labels from physical damage. The owner of the compressed gas cylinder is the only entity allowed by federal law (49CFR) to transport and refill them. It is a violation of transportation regulations to refill compressed gas cylinders without the express written permission of the owner

Purification Methods

Dry oxirane with CaSO4, then distil it from crushed NaOH. It has also been purified by passage, as a gas, through towers containing solid NaOH. [Beilstein 17/1 V 3.]


May form explosive mixture with air. Chemically unstable. Dangerously reactive; may rearrange chemically and/or polymerize violently with evolution of heat; when in contact with highly active catalytic surfaces, such as anhydrous chlorides of iron, tin and aluminum; pure oxides of iron and aluminum; and alkali metal hydroxides. Even small amounts of strong acids; alkalis, or oxidizers can cause a reaction. Avoid contact with copper. Protect container from physical damage, sun and heat. Attacks some plastics, rubber or coatings.

Waste Disposal

Return refillable compressed gas cylinders to supplier. Concentrated waste containing no peroxides-discharge liquid at a controlled rate near a pilot flame. Concentrated waste containing peroxides-perforation of a container of the waste from a safe distance followed by open burning


Ethylene oxide is dangerously explosive under fi re condition; it is flammable over an extremely large range of concentrations in air and burns in the absence of oxygen.


ETHYLENE OXIDE Preparation Products And Raw materials

Raw materials

Preparation Products


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View Lastest Price from ETHYLENE OXIDE manufacturers

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US $1.00 / kg 1g 99% 100KG career henan chemical co

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