Methyl propionate

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Methyl propionate
Methyl propionate.svg
IUPAC name
Methyl propanoate
Other names
Propanoic acid, methyl ester
Propionic acid, methyl ester
ChemSpider 10653
Jmol-3D images Image
PubChem 11124
Molar mass 88.11 g·mol−1
Appearance Colorless liquid[1]
Density 0.915 g/mL[1]
Melting point −88 °C (−126 °F; 185 K)[1]
Boiling point 80 °C (176 °F; 353 K)[1]
72 g/L (20 °C)[1]
Flash point −2 °C (28 °F; 271 K)[1]
465 °C (869 °F; 738 K)[1]
Except where noted otherwise, data is given for materials in their standard state (at 25 °C (77 °F), 100 kPa)
Infobox references

Methyl propionate, also known as methyl propanoate, is a chemical compound with the molecular formula C4H8O2. It is a volatile ester with a sweet, fruity, rum-like odor.[2]


Methyl propionate can be prepared by esterification of propionic acid with methanol. Industrially, it is prepared by the reaction of ethylene with carbon monoxide and methanol in the presence of nickel carbonyl.[3]


Methyl propionate is used as a solvent for cellulose nitrate and lacquers, and as a raw material for the production of paints, varnishes and other chemicals such as methyl methacrylate.[2][3]

Due to its fruity smell and taste, it is also used in fragrances and flavoring.[2][4]


  1. ^ a b c d e f g Record in the GESTIS Substance Database of the IFA
  2. ^ a b c "Methyl Propionate Hazardous Substance Fact Sheet". New Jersey Department of Health and Senior Services. 
  3. ^ a b Ulf-Rainer Samel, Walter Kohler, Armin Otto Gamer and Ullrich Keuser (2000). Propionic Acid and Derivatives. Ullmann's Encyclopedia of Industrial Chemistry. doi:10.1002/14356007.a22_223.pub2. ISBN 9783527306732. 
  4. ^ "Methyl propionate".