Dimethyl ether

  • Methyl ether
  • Oxybismethane
  • Methyl oxide
Formula
CH3OCH3
Structure
Description
Dimethyl ether is a colorless gas with a faint ethereal odor.
Uses
Rocket propellant, anesthetic, starter for gasoline engines in cold weather.

Registry Numbers and Inventories.
CAS
115-10-6
EC (EINECS/ELINCS)
204-065-8
EC Index Number
603-019-00-8
EC Class
Extremely flammable
RTECS
PM4780000
RTECS class
Other
UN (DOT)
1033
Merck
12,6148
Beilstein/Gmelin
1730743
Beilstein Reference
4-01-00-01245
Swiss Giftliste 1
G-8177
Canada DSL/NDSL
DSL
US TSCA
Listed
Austrailia AICS
Listed
New Zealand
Listed
Japan ENCS (MITI)
Listed
Korea ECL
Listed

Properties.
Formula
C2H6O
Formula mass
46.07
Melting point, °C
-138.5
Boiling point, °C
-22
Vapor pressure, mmHg
3844 (20 C)
Vapor density (air=1)
1.617
Critical temperature
127
Critical pressure
52.6
Density
0.6684 g/cm3 (20 C)
Solubility in water
Soluble
Viscosity
0.009 cp (23 C)
Surface tension
16 g/s2 at -10 C.
Refractive index
1.3288 (-10 C)
Partition coefficient, pKow
0.10
Heat of fusion
4.9 kJ/mol
Heat of vaporization
21.5 kJ/mol
Heat of combustion
-1463 kJ/mol

Hazards and Protection.
Storage
Protect against physical damage. Outside or detached storage is preferred. Inside storage should be in cool, well-ventilated, noncombustible location away from all possible sources of ignition. Keep in closed container away from heat and open flame.
Handling
Containers of this material may be hazardous when emptied. Since emptied containers retain product residues (vapor, liquid, and/or solid), all hazard precautions given in the data sheet must be observed. All five gallon pails and larger metal containers including tank cars and tank trucks should be grounded and/or bonded when material is transferred.
Protection
Wear appropriate protective gloves, clothing and goggles. Always wear thermal protective clothing when handling refrigerated/cryogenic liquids.
Respirators
Wear positive pressure self-contained breathing apparatus (SCBA).
Small spills/leaks
Keep sparks, flames, and other sources of ignition away. Keep material out of water sources and sewers. Attempt to stop leak if without undue personnel hazard. Use water spray to knock-down vapors.
Stability
Stable.
Incompatibilities
Use of lithium aluminum hydride or aluminum hydride to dry methyl ethers may cause explosions, which are attributed to solubility of carbon dioxide. High concentrated of peroxides were found to be present.
Decomposition
When heated to decomposition it emits acrid smoke and irritating fumes.

Fire.
Flash Point,°C
-41
Autoignition, °C
350
Upper exp. limit, %
18
Lower exp. limit, %
3.4
Fire fighting
Do not extinguish fire unless flow can be stopped. Use water in flooding quantities as fog. Cool all affected containers with flooding quantities of water. Apply water from as far a distance as possible.
Fire potential
EXTREMELY FLAMMABLE. Will be easily ignited by heat, sparks or flames. Will form explosive mixtures with air.
Hazards
Containers may explode. Vapors are heavier than air and may travel long distance to a source of ignition and flash back.
Health
2
 
Flammability
4
 
 
Reactivity
1
 

Health.
Poison_Class
5
Exposure effects
Irregular breathing, reduced body temperature, and low heart rate have been noted as early effects in industrial exposures. Exhaustion, dizziness, excitation, headache, CNS depression, and seizures have occurred. Ether readily passes the placental barrier. Concentrations in the fetus are expected to be the same as in the maternal blood.
   Ingestion
Ether is irritating to mucous membranes and vomiting might be expected after ingestion. Anorexia has been reported in patients with deliberate ether abuse.
   Inhalation
Ether is irritating to mucous membranes. Cough and laryngeal spasm have been reported.
   Skin
Ether will defat the skin with multiple exposures.
   Eyes
Excessive salivation has been reported. Prolonged exposure to high vapor concentrations may cause eye injury.

First aid
 
   Ingestion
This compound is a gas, therefore inhalation is the first route of exposure.
   Inhalation
IMMEDIATELY leave the contaminated area; take deep breaths of fresh air. If symptoms (such as wheezing, coughing, shortness of breath, or burning in the mouth, throat, or chest) develop, call a physician and be prepared to transport the victim to a hospital. Provide proper respiratory protection to rescuers entering an unknown atmosphere. Whenever possible, Self-Contained Breathing Apparatus (SCBA) should be used.
   Skin
CAUTION: Exposure of skin to compressed gases may result in freezing of the skin. Treatment for frostbite may be necessary. Remove the victim from the source of contamination. IMMEDIATELY wash affected areas gently with COLD water (and soap, if necessary) while removing and isolating all contaminated clothing. Dry carefully with clean, soft towels. If symptoms such as inflammation or irritation develop, IMMEDIATELY call a physician or go to a hospital for treatment.
   Eyes
First check the victim for contact lenses and remove if present. Flush victim's eyes with water or normal saline solution for 20 to 30 minutes while simultaneously calling a hospital or poison control center. Do not put any ointments, oils, or medication in the victim's eyes without specific instructions from a physician. IMMEDIATELY transport the victim after flushing eyes to a hospital even if no symptoms (such as redness or irritation) develop.

Transport.
UN number
1033
Response guide
Hazard class
2.1
USCG CHRIS Code
DIM
 
Std. Transport #
4905725 4905742