Supriya Ghosh (Editor)

2,3 Butanediol

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Formula  C4H10O2
Density  987 kg/m³
Molar mass  90.121 g/mol
2,3-Butanediol httpsuploadwikimediaorgwikipediacommons00
Appearance  nearly colorless solid or liquid

2,3-Butanediol is a organic compound with the formula is (CH3)2(CHOH)2. 2,3-Butanediol has three stereoisomers, all of which are colorless, viscous liquids. Butanediols have applications as precursors to various plastics and pesticides.


2,3-Butanediol 23Butanediol 98 SigmaAldrich


2,3-Butanediol meso23Butanediol 99 SigmaAldrich

Of the three stereoisomers, two are enantiomers (levo- and dextro-2,3-butanediol) and one is a meso compound. The enantiomeric pair have (2R, 3R) and (2S, 3S) configurations at carbons 2 and 3, while the meso compound has configuration (2R, 3S) or, equivalently, (2S, 3R).

Industrial production and uses

2,3-Butanediol is prepared by hydrolysis of 2,3-butene oxide:

(CH3CH)2O + H2O → (CH3)2(CHOH)2

The isomer distribution depends on the stereochemistry of the epoxide.

The meso isomer is used to combine with naphthalene-1,5-diisocyanate. The resulting polyurethane is called "Vulkollan".

Biological production

2,3-Butanediol 14Dibromo23butanediol 95 SigmaAldrich

The (2R,3R)-stereoisomer of 2,3-butanediol is produced by a variety of microorganisms in a process known as butanediol fermentation. It is found naturally in cocoa butter, in the roots of Ruta graveolens, sweet corn, and in rotten mussels. It is used in the resolution of carbonyl compounds in gas chromatography.

2,3-Butanediol 2R3R23Butanediol CAS 24347588 SCBT

During World War II research was done towards producing 2,3-butanediol by fermentation in order to produce 1,3-butadiene, the monomer of the polybutadiene used in a leading type of synthetic rubber.


2,3-Butanediol Wikipedia

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