Preparation and uses of Propan – 1, 2, 3 triol (glycerol)

A trihydric alcohol, glycerol is a constituent of oils and fats. Oils and fats are tri esters of long chain fatty acids. On hydrolosys in presence of an alkali, the tri esters yield glycerol and the fall of the carboxylic acids.

formation of glycerol

Glycerol is obtained as a by-product in the soap industry prepared by saponification of oils and fats. It is a colourless, viscous, hygroscopic liquid. It is miscible with water and is sweet in taste.

It is used in the manufacture of:

a) a polyster called glyptal and

b) glyceryl trinitrate.

Glycerol is also used in medicines, cosmetics and in textile processing.

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