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Product name isobutyraldehyde
Synonyms isobutanal
GOST no data
CAS 78-84-2

Isobutyraldehyde ((CH3)2CHCHO) is a clear, colorless, flammable liquid with a pungent acrid odor. It is fully miscible in diethyl ether, acetone, chloroform, ethanol, methanol, tetrahydrofuran and a number organic solvents. Solubility in water is 10% wt at 20°C. Butyraldehyde forms an azeotrope mixture with water (bp 60.5°C, 5% wt of water).

It show chemical properties of typical aliphatic aldehyde. Isobutyraldehyde is trimerized on air to form paraisobutyraldehyde (2,4,6-triisopropyl-1,3,5-trioxane):

isobutyraldehyde trimerization

In the presence of base isobutyraldehyde undergoes dimerization to give 4-hydroxy-2,6-diisopropyl-5,5-dimethyl-1,3-dioxane, which after treatment with diluted acid converts into isobutylaldol:

isobutyraldehyde aldol condensation

Isobutanal can be catalytically hydrogenated to give isobutanol. Oxidation of isobutyraldehyde resilts in isobutanoic acid. Interaction with ketene leads to β-isocaprolacton formation:

reaction of ketene with isobutyraldehyde

Isobutanal is a toxic compound by inhalation or through skin absorption. It may irritate mucous membranes.


Almost amount of isobutanal is synthesized as a by-product of butanal production via hydroformylation of propylene (oxosynthesis process) at 80-120°C and pressure 0.7-3.0MPa in the presence of catalyst (cobalt carbonyl Co2(CO)8 or ruthenium complexes). This reaction results in the mixture of butyraldehyde and isobutyraldehyde with the ratio 3:1, which then is separated by rectification:

2CH3CH=CH2 + 2CO + 3H2O → (CH3)2CHCHO + CH3CH2CH2CHO


  • in pharmaceutical industry for production of vitamin B5 (pantothenic acid);
  • as a source for isobutyl alcohol, neopentyl glycol and isobutanoic acid production;
  • to make an amino acids such as valine and leucine;
  • to produce repellents, insecticides, plasticizers and other chemicals;
  • in manufacture of rubber accelerators, textile auxiliaries, perfumery and flavors;

  • Manufacturer(s) no data
    Chemical structure of isobutyraldehyde

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