Ammonium acetate

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Ammonium acetate
Ammonium acetate skeletal formula
Ball-and-stick model of ammonium acetate
Crystalline of ammonium acetate
IUPAC name
Ammonium ethanoate
631-61-8 YesY
ChemSpider 11925 YesY
Jmol-3D images Image
PubChem 517165
RTECS number AF3675000
Molar mass 77.08 g·mol−1
Appearance White solid crystals, deliquescent
Odor Slighty acetic
Density 1.17 g/cm3 (20 °C)[1]
1.073 g/cm3 (25 °C)
Melting point 110–114 °C (230–237 °F; 383–387 K) [3][1]
Boiling point 117.1 °C (242.8 °F; 390.2 K)
at 760 mmHg, decomposes
102 g/100 mL (0 °C)
148 g/100 mL (4 °C)[1]
143 g/100 mL (20 °C)
533 g/100 mL (80 °C)
Solubility Soluble in alcohol, SO2, acetone, liquid ammonia[2]
Solubility in methanol 7.89 g/100 mL (15 °C)[3][1]
131.24 g/100 g (94.2 °C)[2]
Solubility in dimethylformamide 0.1 g/100 g[2]
−615 kJ/mol[2]
Main hazards Irritant
Safety data sheet JT Baker
GHS pictograms The exclamation-mark pictogram in the Globally Harmonized System of Classification and Labelling of Chemicals (GHS)[3]
GHS signal word Warning
H303, H316, H320, H333[3]
P281, P335[3]
NFPA 704
Flammability code 1: Must be pre-heated before ignition can occur. Flash point over 93 °C (200 °F). E.g., canola oil Health code 1: Exposure would cause irritation but only minor residual injury. E.g., turpentine Reactivity code 1: Normally stable, but can become unstable at elevated temperatures and pressures. E.g., calcium Special hazards (white): no codeNFPA 704 four-colored diamond
Flash point 136 °C (277 °F; 409 K) [3]
Lethal dose or concentration (LD, LC):
386 mg/kg (mice, intravenous)[2]
Except where otherwise noted, data are given for materials in their standard state (at 25 °C [77 °F], 100 kPa).
 N verify (what isYesY/N?)
Infobox references

Ammonium acetate is a chemical compound with the formula NH4C2H3O2 (or C2H4O2.NH3 or C2H7NO2 or CH3COONH4). It is a white solid and can be derived from the reaction of ammonia and acetic acid. It is available commercially and, depending on grade, can be rather inexpensive.

Uses and distinctive properties[edit]

As the salt of a weak acid and a weak base, ammonium acetate has a number of distinctive properties.

Ammonium acetate is volatile at low pressures. Because of this, it has been used to replace cell buffers with non-volatile salts in preparing samples for mass spectrometry.[4] It is also popular as a buffer for mobile phases for HPLC with ELSD detection for this reason. Other volatile salts that have been used for this include ammonium formate.

Food Additive[edit]

Ammonium acetate is also used as a food additive as an acidity regulator; INS number 264. It is approved for usage in Australia and New Zealand.[5]


CH3COONH4 is hygroscopic and decomposes easily to acetamide if heated above 165 °C.[citation needed]


In this reaction, a salt is converted to two molecular species, which is a relatively uncommon conversion at mild temperatures. Further dehydration leads to acetonitrile or methyl cyanide, an important and widely used solvent.


Ammonium acetate is produced by the neutralization of acetic acid with ammonium carbonate or by saturating glacial acetic acid with dry ammonia gas.[6] Obtaining crystalline ammonium acetate is difficult on account of its aqueous solution giving off ammonia when evaporated.


  1. ^ a b c d Pradyot, Patnaik (2003). Handbook of Inorganic Chemicals. The McGraw-Hill Companies, Inc. ISBN 0-07-049439-8. 
  2. ^ a b c d e f
  3. ^ a b c d e f g "Safety Data Sheet of Ammonium Acetate" (PDF). Tedia Company Inc. 2011-08-12. Retrieved 2014-06-10. 
  4. ^ Berman et al., 2008. J Am Soc Mass Spectrom, 19:1230-1236.
  5. ^ Australia New Zealand Food Standards Code "Standard 1.2.4 - Labelling of ingredients". Retrieved 2011-10-27. 
  6. ^ Brannt, William (1914). A practical treatise on the manufacture of vinegar. Lancaster, PA: Henry Carey Baird & Co. pp. 316–317. 

Further reading[edit]

  • G. Jones, Organic Reactions, 1967, volume 15, 204ff (the Knoevenagel Reaction)

External links[edit]