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  • Butanol or butyl alcohol , is a primary alcohol with a 4 carbon structure and the molecular formula of C4H10O.
  •  It belongs to the higher alcohols and branched-chain alcohols.
  • It is primarily used as a solvent, as an intermediate in chemical synthesis, and as a fuel.


  • The most common process starts with propene, which is run through an hydroformylation reaction to form butanal, which is then reduced with hydrogen to butanol.
  • Butanol can also be produced by fermentation of biomass by bacteria.


  • Acetone-butanol  fermentation was once run commercially in many countries until these chemicals could be made more cheaply from fossil oil sources.
  • Data from the National Pollutant Release Inventory  indicate that releases of n-butanol have remained relatively constant.


  • A large part of the n-Butanol produced is converted into derivatives (primarily esters) for use as solvents in the coatings industry.
  • N-Butanol is an eminently suitable solvent for acid-curable lacquers and baking finishes derived from urea (Plastopal), melamine (Luwipal), or phenolic resins.

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