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dimethyl sulfide

Product name dimethyl sulfide
Synonyms methyl sulfide
GOST no data
CAS 75-18-3

Dimethyl sulfide (CH3)2S is a colorless, volatile, flammable liquid with a disagreeable odor. It is easily dissolves in ethanol, diethyl ether, acetone; almost insoluble in water. As a typical dialkyl sulfide, DMS can be easily oxidized with oxygen of air to give dimethyl sulfoxide (DMSO). Dimethyl sulfide can be chlorinated in aprotic solvents:

(CH3)2S + Cl2 --> CH3SCH2Cl + HCl
CH3SCH2Cl + 2Cl2 --> CH3SCCl3 + 2HCl

DMS is the most abundant single biological sulfur compound emitted to the atmosphere. Emission occurs over the oceans by phytoplankton.


Dimethyl sulfide is produced industrially by the reaction of chloromethane with potassium sulfide or sodium methylmercaptide CH3SNa in polar solvents and under nitrogen atmosphere:

2CH3Cl + K2S --> (CH3)2S + 2KCl


Dimethyl sulfide is applied:

  • as a feedstock in preparation of dimethyl sulfoxide (DMSO);
  • as a natural gas odorant (susceptibility threshold is 110 mg/m3);
  • as a presulfiding agent in the refinery and petrochemical production. The catalysts in hydrocracking, hydrodenitrification, hydrodesulfurization and reforming processes are used in oxide forms, which must be converted to the active sulfide form during the start-up to prevent the reduction of the catalysts to their base material by heat. It is used to modify the reactivity of catalysts to use in high temperature process furnaces. Also dimethyl sulfide is used to prevent the coke deposits which acts as a thermal insulator in the tube as it accumulates in pyrolysis furnaces;
  • in food industry as a flavor component to enhance corn-related flavors;
  • as an intermediate in insecticides and other chemicals preparation;

  • Manufacturer(s) JSC Volzhsky Orgsynthese
    Chemical structure of dimethyl sulfide

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