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Product name tetrachloroethylene
Synonyms perchloroethylene
GOST no data
CAS 127-18-4

Tetrachloroethylene (perchloroethylene) is a clear, colorless liquid with a pungent odor. It is miscible with most organic solvents; solubility in water is negligible (0.04% by mass at 25°C). Tetrachloroethylene can be chlorinated in liquid phase at 50-80°C in the presence 0.1% of FeCl3 to give hexachloroethane. Chlorination in the presence of HF and SbCl5 results in HCFC-113 (CF2Cl-CCl2F). Tetrachloroethylene oxidizes to give trichloroacetyl chloride and phosgene. To prevent spontaneous oxidation commercial perchloroethylene is inhibited with N-methylpyrrole and N-methylmorpholine.


Perchloroethylene is manufactured:

  • jointly with carbon tetrachloride by complete chlorination of individual hydrocarbons C1-C3 or their mixture or their chlorinated derivatives in vapour phase at 600°C;
  • by chlorination of mixture of propane, propylene and chlorinated hydrocarbons C3 in sand boiling bed at 520-540°C;
  • by oxidative chlorination of hydrocarbons C2-C3 or their chlorinated derivatives at 350-400°C in the presence of CuCl2 + KCl on silica gel or on another carrier;
  • by dichloroethane chlorination at 400°C in the presence of aluminium chloride AlCl3 and potassium chloride KCl. By-product of this process is trichloroethylene:

    ClCH2CH2Cl + 3Cl2 --> Cl2C=CCl2 + 4HCl


    Tetrachloroethylene is used:

  • as a most widely used solvent in dry cleaning;
  • for cleaning metals and certain other solids in vapour-degreasing apparatuses;
  • as a solvent for fats, greases, waxes, rubbers, gums and caffeine from coffee;
  • for processing textiles;
  • as an anthelminthic drug;
  • as an intermediate to manufacture trichloroacetic acid;
  • in making paint removers and in printing inks;
  • as a heat-exchange fluid;
  • as an intermediate in the manufacture of refrigerants such as HCFC-113, HCFC-134a and others;

  • Manufacturer(s) JSC Kaustik
    Chemical structure of tetrachloroethylene

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