Atomic and Molecular Structure

What is Urethane? – Definition, Formula, Applications


Urethane is a colorless and odorless substance, a crystalline compound that emits toxic fumes of nitrogen oxides. It happens when heating leads to decomposition.

Mainly we use it in the production of amino resins but is also used in the manufacture of pesticides, fumigants, cosmetics, and pharmaceuticals. Moreover, the revelation to urethan can affect the central nervous system, liver and can cause bone marrow suppression. Urethan is generally a human carcinogen.


Introduction to Urethane

It is a carbamate ester obtained by the formal condensation of ethanol with carbamic acid. Furthermore, it has been found in alcoholic beverages. It play a vital role as a fungal metabolite and a mutagen. Besides, urethane appears as colorless, odorless crystals or white powder. Sublimes readily at 217°F and 54 mmHg. Cooling saline taste.

Formula of Urethane

NH2COOC2H5  is the basic or chemical formula of Urethane. But if we talk about the molecular formula of Urethane then it is: C3H7NO2

Properties of Urethane

  1. Firstly, urethane appears as odorless colorless crystals or white powder. Sublimes readily at 217°F and 54 mm Hg. Cooling saline taste.
  2. Secondly, it is colorless, columnar crystals or white, granular powder.
  3. Third, as far as its odor is concerned. it is almost odorless.
  4. It has a cooling, saline, and bitter taste.
  5. Its boiling point ranges from 360 to 363 ° F at 760 mm Hg.
  6. As far as it’s melting point is concerned, it ranges from 118 to 122 ° F.
  7. Its flashpoint is at 198 ° F.
  8. Its solubility is greater than or equal to 100 mg/mL at 72° F.
  9. Lastly, density lies at 0.9862 at 70 ° F.

Applications of Urethane

1. Apparel

Due to today’s advancement in polyurethane manufacturing techniques now they can make a broad range of polyurethane apparel. They make it from leathers and man-made skins used for garments, sports clothes and a variety of accessories.

2. Appliances

Polyurethane is an essential component in major appliances that consumers use every day. However, the most general use for polyurethanes in major appliances is static and rigid foams for refrigerators and freezer thermal insulation systems.

3. Automotive

Polyurethanes are used throughout cars. Moreover, in order to make the foam that makes car seats comfortable, the car body, interior “headline” ceiling sections, bumpers, spoilers, doors, and windows all use polyurethanes.

4. Buildings and Construction

Modern-day homes requires high-performance materials that are strong, yet lightweight; perform well, yet are easily installed; and are durable, but also versatile. Further, polyurethane helps in conserving natural resources. Moreover, it helps in preserving the environment by reducing energy usage.

5. Composite Wood

Firstly, Polyurethane plays an important role in modern materials like composite wood. Secondly, composite wood products use Polyurethane-based binders to permanently glue organic materials into an oriented strand board. Other items include medium-density fiberboard, long-strand lumber, laminated-veneer lumber, and even strawboard and particleboard.

6. Electronics

Electrical and electronics industries use non-foam polyurethanes to encapsulate, seal and insulate fragile, pressure-sensitive, print circuit boards, underwater cables, and microelectronic components.

Solved Question For You

Question: What is the application of Urethane in the segment of flooring?

Answer: we use it as either foam underlay or on top as a coating, polyurethanes can make the floors we walk on every day more durable, easier to maintain and more aesthetically pleasing.

When we use flexible polyurethane foam as a carpet in a residential or commercial application, it can significantly increase the lifespan of the carpet. Moreover, it protects its appearance, provides added comfort along with reducing ambient noise.

Share with friends

Customize your course in 30 seconds

Which class are you in?
Get ready for all-new Live Classes!
Now learn Live with India's best teachers. Join courses with the best schedule and enjoy fun and interactive classes.
Ashhar Firdausi
IIT Roorkee
Dr. Nazma Shaik
Gaurav Tiwari
Get Started

Leave a Reply

Your email address will not be published. Required fields are marked *

Download the App

Watch lectures, practise questions and take tests on the go.

Customize your course in 30 seconds

No thanks.