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RE: methanol/isopropyl replacement
Two questions: 1)What is driving the desire to replace methanol and 2) Why
would they try IPA as the substitute? Both methanol and IPA are VOC's and
are flammable. Therefore, replacement of methanol with IPA is unlikely to
provide any environmental benefit. In addition, switching from pure
methanol to a denatured alcohol could introduce new problems since some
toxic compounds are used for denaturing.
If you want to succeed at substitution, you need to identify why a given
compound is used and then search for a less toxic material that provides the
same functionality. I'm guessing that the methanol is used as a co-solvent
to promote the mixing of essential oils that are hydrophobic with the water
carrier. If so, then you might be able to achieve the same result by the
inclusion of a surfactant.
But, dissolution via emulsion is different than a true solution and the oil
globules may not smell the same as the methanol formulation. Also, this new
perfume will not dry as fast or produce the same cooling effect. This can
have an impact on customer acceptance. And the use of surfactants is not
without its whole set of environmental issues.
Mike Callahan, PE
Principal Chemical Engineer
Jacobs Engineering Group Inc.
1111 S. Arroyo Parkway
Pasadena CA 91105
From: Dearnley, Benjamin [mailto:Benjamin.Dearnley@state.me.us]
Sent: Friday, January 18, 2002 10:38 AM
Subject: methanol/isopropyl replacement
I am working with a small scale fragrance manufacturer that needs to replace
methanol. The methanol is added with the perfume to distilled water and
mixed. Without the methanol the distilled water and perfume will not mix.
They have tried isopropyl alcohol but it smells and compromises the
fragrance. Any ideas for a substitute?
Thanks in advance,
Ben Dearnley, Environmental Specialist
Toxics and Hazardous Waste Reduction Program
Maine Department of Environmental Protection
17 State House Station
Augusta, ME 04333
(207) 287-2814 fax
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