Hexanoic acid

Hexanoic acid, also known as caproic acid, is the carboxylic acid derived from hexane with the chemical formula CH
3
(CH
2
)
4
COOH
. It is a colorless oily liquid with an odor that is fatty, cheesy, waxy, and like that of goats[1] or other barnyard animals. It is a fatty acid found naturally in various animal fats and oils, and is one of the chemicals that give the decomposing fleshy seed coat of the ginkgo its characteristic unpleasant odor.[3] It is also one of the components of vanilla. The primary use of hexanoic acid is in manufacture of its esters for artificial flavors, and in the manufacture of hexyl derivatives, such as hexylphenols.[1] Salts and esters of hexanoic acid are known as hexanoates or caproates.

Hexanoic acid
Names
IUPAC name
Hexanoic acid
Other names
Caproic acid; n-Caproic acid; C6:0 (Lipid numbers)
Identifiers
3D model (JSmol)
ChEBI
ChEMBL
ChemSpider
ECHA InfoCard 100.005.046
KEGG
UNII
Properties
C6H12O2
Molar mass 116.160 g·mol−1
Appearance Oily liquid[1]
Odor goat-like
Density 0.929 g/cm3[2]
Melting point −3.4 °C (25.9 °F; 269.8 K)[1]
Boiling point 205.8 °C (402.4 °F; 478.9 K)[1]
1.082 g/100 mL[1]
Solubility soluble in ethanol, ether
Acidity (pKa) 4.88
-78.55·10−6 cm3/mol
1.4170
Viscosity 3.1 mP
Hazards
NFPA 704 (fire diamond)
1
3
0
Flash point 103 °C (217 °F; 376 K)[2]
380 °C (716 °F; 653 K)
Explosive limits 1.3-9.3%
Lethal dose or concentration (LD, LC):
3000 mg/kg (rat, oral)
Related compounds
Related compounds
Pentanoic acid, Heptanoic acid
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

Two other acids are named after goats: caprylic (C8) and capric (C10). Along with hexanoic acid, they account for 15% of the fat in goat's milk.

Caproic, caprylic, and capric acids (capric is a crystal- or wax-like substance, whereas the other two are mobile liquids) are not only used for the formation of esters, but also commonly used "neat" in: butter, milk, cream, strawberry, bread, beer, nut, and other flavors.

See also

References

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