versatile industrial solvent
Trichloroethylene (TCE) is a versatile solvent with wide commercial
applications, chiefly due to its physical properties. It has high solvent
power, is nonflammable and is practically insoluble in water. It is
chemically stable under operating conditions. All this contributes to its
popularity as a cleaning agent.
The Low latent heat, low boiling point, low viscosity and high vapour
density of TCE make it ideal for vapour degreasing of metal parts without
problems of handling. TCE is rapidly replacing other cleaning processes such
as emulsion, alkaline and steam cleaning.
TCE is a clear, almost colourless, volatile liquid with a characteristic
odour. It is highly soluble in ether and alcohol and is miscible with most
organic solvents while being practically insoluble in water.
Metal cleaning, finishing and vapour degresing:
Cold, ultrasonic and vapour degreasing of metal parts between fabrication
steps and before finishing or assembly, surface preparation of metal parts
for galvanising, anodising, electro plating, painting and bonding.
For quick removal of oils and waxes in dip coating of rust preventing
formulations, the oil and grease covered parts are placed in an atmosphere
of TCE vapour. The hot vapour condenses immediately on the cold metal
surface, dissolving the oils and greases and flushing them. The work heats
to the vapour temperature in minutes, leaving the work clean, dry and ready
for further treatment.
Extraction of vegetable oils, waxes, animal fats, caffeine, cocoa butter,
essential oils, pharmaceuticals, for recovery of oils and grease from waste,
rags and paper, turnings etc.
In dehydration and purification of many chemicals, as a reactant for
manufacture of various halohydrocarbons and other chemicals, as an additive
for promoting polymerisation of monomers etc.
- TCE is a good heat transfer medium in the temperature range of
-73°C to 120°C and is used in simulating out door
conditions in material testing.
- Used as a coolant for cutting tantalum and other special metals.
- Used as a freezing point depressant, especially in fire
- Soaps containing TCE are used as disinfectants and insecticides.
- Used in making rubber cements, bone glue and adhesive activators.
- As a solvent for paints, lacquers, dyes, oils, fats, waxes,
resins, halohydrocarbons and many other chemicals.
- Used in textile industry for removing spots, recovering oils and
greases, sizing and dry-cleaning.
||CHCI = CCI2
||Physical State at Room
||Vapour Pressure at 20°C
||Boiling Point at 760mm Hg
||Vapour Density (Air-1)
||Specific Gravity at 20/20°C
||Refractive Index at 20°C
||Specific Heat at 80C
||0.225 cal/ gm/ C
||Dielectric Constant at 16C
||Latent Heat of Vaporisation
||57.2 cal/ gm
||Surface Tension at 25°C
||32 Dynes/ cm
||Viscosity at 20°C
||Solubility in water at 25°C
||Solubility of water at 25°C
|Releative density at 27/ 27°C
||1.452 to 1.458
|Residue on Evaporation mg/ 100
|Distillation yield between 86
and 88 C at 760 mm Hg Percent by volume, min.
|Alkalinity (as Na2 Co3) by
|Colour, Pt Co, APHA
|Non Volatile matter, epm
Handling and Storage
TCE may be employed in the presence or absence of air,
water and light with any of the common metals, at temperatures upto 120C. It
is practically nonflammable at normal room temperature. If exposed to sudden
high temperatures, it may evolve toxic gases due to decomposition. The
solvent should be kept neutral or alkaline in pH and free of corrosion