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Toluene diisocyanate

Toluene diisocyanate

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Encyclopedia
Toluene diisocyanate is an aromatic
Aromaticity
In organic chemistry, Aromaticity is a chemical property in which a conjugated ring of unsaturated bonds, lone pairs, or empty orbitals exhibit a stabilization stronger than would be expected by the stabilization of conjugation alone. The earliest use of the term was in an article by August...

 diisocyanate
Isocyanate
Isocyanate is the functional group of elements –N=C=O , not to be confused with the cyanate functional group which is arranged as –O–C≡N or with isocyanide, R-N≡C. Any organic compound which contains an isocyanate group may also be referred to in brief as an isocyanate. An isocyanate may have more...

. It is produced for reaction with polyol
Polyol
A polyol is an alcohol containing multiple hydroxyl groups. In two technological disciplines the term "polyol" has a special meaning: food science and polymer chemistry.- Polyols in food science :...

s to form polyurethane
Polyurethane
A polyurethane is any polymer composed of a chain of organic units joined by carbamate links. Polyurethane polymers are formed through step-growth polymerization, by reacting a monomer with another monomer in the presence of a catalyst.Polyurethanes are...

s. It exists in two isomer
Isomer
In chemistry, isomers are compounds with the same molecular formula but different structural formulas. Isomers do not necessarily share similar properties, unless they also have the same functional groups. There are many different classes of isomers, like stereoisomers, enantiomers, geometrical...

s, 2,4-TDI (CAS: 584-84-9) and 2,6-TDI (CAS: 91-08-7). 2,4-TDI is produced in the pure state, but TDI is often marketed as 80/20 and 65/35 mixtures of the 2,4 and 2,6 isomers respectively. It is a highly produced diisocyanate, accounting for 34.1% of the global isocyanate market in 2000, second only to MDI
Methylene diphenyl diisocyanate
Methylene diphenyl diisocyanate, most often abbreviated as MDI, is an aromatic diisocyanate. It exists in three isomers, 2,2'-MDI, 2,4'-MDI, and 4,4'-MDI, but the 4,4' isomer is most widely used. This isomer is also known as Pure MDI. MDI reacts with polyols in the manufacture of polyurethane...

.
All major producers of TDI are members of the International Isocyanate Institute, whose aim is the promotion of the safe handling of TDI in the workplace, community and environment.

Synthesis


There are six steps to the synthesis of pure 2,4-TDI:
  • Nitration: Reaction of toluene
    Toluene
    Toluene, formerly known as toluol, is a clear, water-insoluble liquid with the typical smell of paint thinners. It is a mono-substituted benzene derivative, i.e., one in which a single hydrogen atom from the benzene molecule has been replaced by a univalent group, in this case CH3.It is an aromatic...

     with nitric acid
    Nitric acid
    Nitric acid , also known as aqua fortis and spirit of nitre, is a highly corrosive and toxic strong acid.Colorless when pure, older samples tend to acquire a yellow cast due to the accumulation of oxides of nitrogen. If the solution contains more than 86% nitric acid, it is referred to as fuming...

     and a catalyst to form dinitrotoluene
  • Hydrogenation: Reaction of the dinitrotoluene with hydrogen and a catalyst to form a mixture of isomers of toluene diamine (TDA)
  • Purification: Distillation of the TDA mixture to produce meta-TDA
  • Phosgenation: Reaction of the meta-TDA with phosgene
    Phosgene
    Phosgene is the chemical compound with the formula COCl2. This colorless gas gained infamy as a chemical weapon during World War I. It is also a valued industrial reagent and building block in synthesis of pharmaceuticals and other organic compounds. In low concentrations, its odor resembles...

     to form a crude TDI mixture
  • Purification: Distillation of the crude TDI mixture to produce an 80:20 mixture of 2,4-TDI and 2,6-TDI, known as TDI (80/20)
  • Differentiation: Separation of the TDI (80/20) to produce pure 2,4-TDI and a 65:35 mixture of 2,4-TDI and 2,6-TDI, known as TDI (65/35)

Chemistry


Each of the isocyanate
Isocyanate
Isocyanate is the functional group of elements –N=C=O , not to be confused with the cyanate functional group which is arranged as –O–C≡N or with isocyanide, R-N≡C. Any organic compound which contains an isocyanate group may also be referred to in brief as an isocyanate. An isocyanate may have more...

 functional groups in TDI can react with a hydroxyl group to form a urethane linkage.

2,4-TDI is an asymmetrical molecule and thus has two isocyanate groups of different reactivity. The 4-position is approximately four times more reactive than the 2-position. 2,6-TDI is a symmetrical molecule and thus has two isocyanate groups of similar reactivity, similar to the 2-position on 2,4-TDI. However, since both isocyanate groups are attached to the same aromatic ring, reaction of one isocyanate group will cause a change in the reactivity of the second isocyanate group.

Hazards


Exposure to TDI and its vapors should be avoided. It is a well-documented causative agent of asthma.

Information on handling, personal protective equipment, exposure monitoring, transport, storage, sampling and analysis of TDI, dealing with accidents, and health and environmental information have been published [2]

TDI is one of eleven statutorily listed "Extremely Hazardous Substances" under the New Jersey Toxic Catastrophe Prevention Act whose release "would produce a significant likelihood that persons exposed will suffer acute health effects resulting in death or permanent disability." N.J.S.A. 13:1K-21(e)

See also

  • Methylene diphenyl diisocyanate
    Methylene diphenyl diisocyanate
    Methylene diphenyl diisocyanate, most often abbreviated as MDI, is an aromatic diisocyanate. It exists in three isomers, 2,2'-MDI, 2,4'-MDI, and 4,4'-MDI, but the 4,4' isomer is most widely used. This isomer is also known as Pure MDI. MDI reacts with polyols in the manufacture of polyurethane...

  • Hexamethylene diisocyanate
    Hexamethylene diisocyanate
    Hexamethylene diisocyanate is an organic compound in the class known as isocyanates. More specifically, it is an aliphatic diisocyanate. It is produced in relatively small quantities, accounting for only 3.4% of the global diisocyanate market in the year 2000...

  • Isophorone diisocyanate
    Isophorone diisocyanate
    Isophorone diisocyanate is an organic compound in the class known as isocyanates. More specifically, it is an aliphatic diisocyanate. It is produced in relatively small quantities, accounting for only 3.4% of the global diisocyanate market in the year 2000...


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