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Acetic Anhydride

Other Names:

Ethanoic anhydride

General Information:


CAS Number: 108-24-7

Molecular Weight: 102.09 g/mol

Appearance: Colorless liquid

Melting Point: -73 C

Boiling Point: 138-140 C

Density: 1.08 g/mL at 20 C

Acetic anhydride (Ac2O) is a liquid with a strong acetic acid smell (acetic acid is liberated during the hydrolysis of acetic anhydride by moisture in the air). Acetic anhydride is typically used for acetylation of alcohols or amines.

Common Uses:

Reagent for the acetylation of amines

Reagent for the acetylation of alcohols


Acetic anhydride (Ac2O) is corrosive and a lachrymator.


1) Wikipedia: Acetic anhydride (link)

2) Acetic anhydride (link)

3) Acetic anhydride (link)

4) Pearson, A. J.; Roush, W. R.; Handbook of Reagents for Organic Synthesis; Activating Agents and Protecting Groups