However, unlike ethanol, methanol is highly toxic and unfit for consumption. At room temperature, it is a polar liquid. It is used as an antifreeze, solvent, fuel, and as a denaturant for ethanol. It is also used for producing biodiesel by transesterification reaction.
Methanol is a simplest alcohol with a chemical formula CH3OH. It is not a hydrocarbon since the hydroxyl group is chemically bonded to the carbon atom.
It consists of a methyl group linked with a hydroxy group. It is also known as Wood alcohol or Methyl alcohol. It has a distinctive odor which is milder and sweeter than ethanol. It is volatile and does not have color. It is a flammable, light, poisonous liquid. Consumption of methanol is toxic and can cause blindness. It is widely used in the manufacture of acetic acid and formaldehyde.
Robert Boyle was the first to isolate methanol in the year 1661. It was produced by the distillation of boxwood (Buxus). Nowadays methanol is prepared by the direct combination of carbon monoxide gas and hydrogen in the presence of a catalyst. It is a common laboratory solvent. It is a frequent denaturant additive in the manufacturing of ethanol.
Methanol is the simplest alcohol, consisting of a methyl group linked to a hydroxyl group. It is a light, volatile, colorless, flammable liquid with a distinctive odor similar to that of ethanol (drinking alcohol). Methanol is however far more toxic than ethanol. At room temperature, it is a polar liquid.
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