Chemical Fact Sheet

Chemical Abstract Number (CAS #) 108054
CASRN 108-05-4
SynonymsVinyl acetate
Acetic acid, ethenyl ester
Acetic acid ethylene ether
Analytical Methods EPA Method 8260
Molecular FormulaC4H6O2

Link to the National Library of Medicine's Hazardous Substances
Database for more details on this compound.

Use IN POLYMERIZED FORM FOR PLASTIC MASSES, FILMS, AND LACQUERS. IN PRODN OF EMULSION PAINT SUBSTANCES, FINISHING & IMPREGNATION MATERIALS, & GLUE. CHEMICAL INTERMEDIATE IN SYNTH OF POLYVINYL ACETATE EMULSIONS, RESINS & POLYVINYL ALCOHOL; INTERMEDIATE IN SYNTH OF OTHER POLYMERS, RESINS, AND EMULSIONS. Safety glass interlayers. Its chief use is as a monomer for making poly(vinyl acetate) and vinyl acetate copolymers, which are used in water-based paints, adhesives, paper coatings or nonwoven binders, and applications not requiring service at extreme temperatures. Vinyl acetate is also copolymerized as the minor constituent with vinyl chloride and with ethylene to form commercial polymers and with acrylonitrile to form acrylic fibers. LOW MOLECULAR WT VINYL ACETATE IS USED AS A CHEWING GUM BASE. Used in hair sprays.
Consumption Patterns 60% FOR POLYVINYL ACETATE EMULSIONS AND RESINS; 15% FOR POLYVINYL ALCOHOL; 9% FOR VINYL CHLORIDE COPOLYMERS; 8% FOR POLYVINYL BUTYRAL; 3% FOR ETHYLENE-VINYL ACETATE RESINS AND EMULSIONS; 1% FOR POLYVINYL FORMAL; 4% FOR MISC APPLICATIONS AS A COPOLYMER (1971) 20% FOR ADHESIVE EMULSIONS; 17% FOR PAINT EMULSIONS; 12% FOR TEXTILE AND PAPER EMULSIONS; 23% FOR POLYVINYL ALCOHOL; 10% FOR ETHYLENE/VINYL/VINYL ACETATE; 8% FOR POLYVINYL BUTYRAL; 5% FOR POLYVINYL CHLORIDE COPOLYMERS; 5% FOR MISC (1984 EST) CHEMICAL PROFILE: Vinyl acetate. Polyvinyl acetate emulsions and resins, 40%; (this area is divided evenly between paints and adhesives); polyvinyl alcohol, 15%; polyvinyl butyral, 8%; ethylene-vinyl acetate resins, 6%; polyvinyl chloride copolymers, 3%; miscellaneous, 1%; exports, 27%. CHEMICAL PROFILE: Vinyl acetate. Demand: 1988: 2.56 billion lb; 1989: 2.62 billion lb; 1993 /projected/: 2.9 billion lb. (Includes exports, but not imports, which averaged 6 million lb over the last three years.)
Boiling Point 72.7 Deg C
Melting Point -93.2 DEG C
Molecular Weight 86.09
Density 0.932 @ 20 DEG C/4 DEG C
Odor Threshold Concentration 0.12 ppm 50% recognition threshold the concn at which 50% of the odor panel defined the odor as being representive of the odorant being studied/: 0.40 ppm; 100% recognition threshold: 0.55 ppm.
Sensitivity Data Vinyl acetate vapor at concn below 250 mg/cu m is a primary irritant to the upper respiratory tract & eyes & the liquid may irritate the skin .
Environmental Impact Vinyl acetate is primarily released to the environment from industrial emissions. It is degraded relatively rapidly in the environment by chemical processes, and appears to be susceptible to biodegradation as well. If released to the atmosphere, vinyl acetate is degraded rapidly by reaction with photochemically produced hydroxyl radicals (estimated half-life of 12 hours in a typical atmosphere). If released to water, degradation by hydrolysis (half-life of 7.3 days at 25 deg C and pH 7) and by photochemically produced oxidants will occur. Volatilization from water may be an important fate process (half-lives of 4.4 hr and 2.2 days have been estimated for a model river (1 m deep) and an model pond, respectively). If released to soil, hydrolysis will occur in the presence of moisture. Although leaching is possible, concurrent hydrolysis will decrease its importance. Evaporation from dry surfaces will occur. If released in a spill situation, significant polymerization may occur. Primary human exposure to vinyl acetate most likely results through inhalation at occupational settings.
Environmental Fate TERRESTRIAL FATE: Based on an aqueous hydrolysis half-life of 7.3 days (25 deg C and pH 7), hydrolysis should be a significant process for vinyl acetate in moist soils. Hydrolysis rates will increase as the soil becomes more alkaline. Various screening studies (not utilizing soil media) have indicated that vinyl acetate is readily biodegradable; therefore, significant biodegradation may occur in soil. Vinyl acetate's vapor pressure of 85 mm Hg at 20 deg C indicates that evaporation from dry surfaces is likely to occur. Estimated Koc value of 19-59 indicates that significant leaching is possible; however, concurrent hydrolysis should decrease the environmental importance of leaching. Vinyl acetate readily polymerizes; therefore, if vinyl acetate is released to the environment in a spill situation, significant polymerization may occur. AQUATIC FATE: Vinyl acetate is chemically degraded in natural water by hydrolysis and reaction with photochemically produced oxidants. The estimated hydrolysis half-life at 25 deg C and pH 7 is 7.3 days; the hydrolysis rate increases as the pH increases. Reaction with hydroxyl radicals and singlet oxygen in natural water may proceed at half-life rates of approximately 13 and 8 days, respectively. Removal from water via volatilization may be very significant. Volatilization half-lives of 4.4 hr and 2.2 days have been estimated for a model river (1 m deep) and a model pond, respectively. Various screening studies have indicated that vinyl acetate is readily biodegradable. Aquatic adsorption to sediment, bioconcentration, and direct photolysis are not important. ATMOSPHERIC FATE: Based on a vapor-pressure of 85 mm Hg at 20 degC , vinyl acetate is expected to exist almost entirely in the vapor-phase in the ambient atmosphere(2,SRC). Vapor-phase vinyl acetate is degraded rapidly in the atmosphere by reaction with photochemically produced hydroxyl radicals (estimated half-life of 12 hours in an average atmosphere).
Drinking Water Impact SURFACE WATER: Vinyl acetate has reportedly been detected in a river water from Great Britain . EFFL: Vinyl acetate was qualitatively detected in wastewater effluents collected from the advanced waste treatment facility in Lake Tahoe, CA in Oct 1974 . A concn of 50 ppm was detected in a wastewater effluent from a polyvinyl acetate plant .

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