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Glacial Acrylic Acid

Unsaturated monocarboxylic acid, for manufacturing polymers and for use as a feedstock for syntheses.



Michael Schaefer

Acrylic acid is an unsaturated carboxylic acid. It reacts as a vinyl compound and as a carboxylic acid. It readily undergoes polymerization and addition reactions. It can be used as a carboxylic acid to produce acrylic esters,  acrylamide, N-substituted acrylamides and acrylyl chloride by common methods.


Copolymers can be produced with acrylic and methacrylic esters, acrylonitrile, maleic acid esters, vinyl acetate, vinyl chloride, vinylidene chloride, styrene, butadiene and ethylene.


Homopolymers of acrylic acid and copolymers which contain a preponderance of acrylic acid have a glassy consistency and are frequently soluble in water. They can be used in the form of their free acids and ammonium and alkali salts in many different applications, such as thickeners, dispersing agents, flocculants, protective colloids for stabilizing emulsions and polymer dispersions, wetting agents, coatings and textile finishes.


Acrylic acid readily undergoes addition reactions with a wide variety of organic and inorganic compounds. This makes it a very useful feed-stock for the production of many low molecular compounds. For instance, acrylic acid can be used to produce derivatives of propionic acid with water, alcohols, amines, halogens and chlorinated hydrocar-bons. It can also be used with other substances to produce unsaturated fatty acids, heterocyclic compounds and Diels-Alder addition products.