Ethyl acetate

Ethyl acetate


Other names: Ethyl acetate, Acetic ester, Acetic ether, Ethyl ester of acetic acid

Ethyl acetate (systematically ethyl ethanoate, commonly abbreviated EtOAc or EA) is the organic compound with the formula CH3–COO–CH2–CH3, simplified to C4H8O2. This colorless liquid has a characteristic sweet smell (similar to pear drops) and is used in gluesnail polish removersdecaffeinating tea and coffee, and cigarettes (see list of additives in cigarettes). Ethyl acetate is the ester of ethanol and acetic acid; it is manufactured on a large scale for use as a solvent. The combined annual production in 1985 of Japan, North America, and Europe was about 400,000 tonnes. In 2004, an estimated 1.3 million tonnes were produced worldwide.

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Ethyl acetate is used primarily as a solvent and diluent, being favored because of its low cost, low toxicity, and agreeable odor. For example, it is commonly used to clean circuit boards and in some nail varnish removers (acetone and acetonitrile are also used). Coffee beans and tea leaves are decaffeinated with this solvent.It is also used in paints as an activator or hardener.[citation needed] Ethyl acetate is present in confectioneryperfumes, and fruits. In perfumes, it evaporates quickly, leaving only the scent of the perfume on the skin.