In industrial chemistry, carboalkoxylation is a process for converting alkenes to esters. Also called hydroesterification, this reaction is a form of carbonylation. A closely related reaction is hydrocarboxylation, which employs water in place of alcohols

A commercial application is the carbomethoxylation of ethylene to give methyl propionate:

C2H4 + CO + MeOH → MeO2CC2H5

The process is catalyzed by Pd[C6H4(CH2PBu-t)2]2. Under similar conditions, other Pd-diphosphines catalyze formation of polyethyleneketone.

Methyl proprionate ester is a precursor to methyl methacrylate, which is used in plastics and adhesives.[1]


  1. Scott D. Barnicki "Synthetic Organic Chemicals" in Handbook of Industrial Chemistry and Biotechnology edited by James A. Kent, New York : Springer, 2012. 12th ed. ISBN 978-1-4614-4259-2.
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