Methyl cyanoformate

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Methyl cyanoformate
IUPAC name
Methyl cyanoformate
3D model (Jmol)
ECHA InfoCard 100.037.826
Molar mass 85.06
Appearance colorless liquid
Density 1.072 g/cm3
Boiling point 100 to 101 °C (212 to 214 °F; 373 to 374 K)
Main hazards toxic
Except where otherwise noted, data are given for materials in their standard state (at 25 °C [77 °F], 100 kPa).
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Infobox references

Methyl cyanoformate is the organic compound with the formula CH3OC(O)CN. It is used as a reagent in organic synthesis as a source of the methoxycarbonyl group,[1] in which context it is also known as Mander's reagent.

It is notoriously known for being an ingredient in Zyklon A, a predecessor to Zyklon B, the brand name of a German gas pesticide that was used during the Holocaust.


  1. ^ Simon R. Crabtree, W. L. Alex Chu, Lewis N. Mander "C-Acylation of Enolates by Methyl Cyanoformate: An Examination of Site- and Stereoselectivity"Synlett 1990; 1990: 169–170. doi:10.1055/s-1990-21025