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Isoamyl acetate

Isoamyl acetate
IUPAC name 3-methyl-1-butyl acetate
Other names isopentyl acetate
banana oil
isopentyl ethanoate
pear essence
3-methylbutyl acetate
CAS number 123-92-2
Molecular formula C7H14O2
Molar mass 130.19 g/mol
Density 0.876 g/cm3
Melting point

-78 °C

Boiling point

142 °C

Except where noted otherwise, data are given for
materials in their standard state
(at 25 °C, 100 kPa)

Infobox disclaimer and references

Isoamyl acetate, also known as isopentyl acetate, is an organic compound that is the ester formed from isoamyl alcohol and acetic acid. It is a clear colorless liquid that is only slightly soluble in water, but very soluble in most organic solvents.

Isoamyl acetate has a strong odor (similar to juicy fruit) which is also described as similar to both banana and pear. Banana oil is a term that is applied either to pure isoamyl acetate or to flavorings that are mixtures of isoamyl acetate, amyl acetate, nitrocellulose and other flavors. Pear oil commonly refers to a solution of isoamyl acetate in ethanol that is used as an artificial flavor.

Isoamyl acetate is also used to test the effectiveness of respirators or gas masks because it has a strong smell which is generally not experienced as unpleasant that can be detected at low concentrations, and has low toxicity.

It is also used as a solvent for some varnishes and nitrocellulose lacquers, as well as being a honey bee pheromone and can be used to attract large groups of honeybees to a small area.

Isoamyl acetate is released by a honey bee's sting apparatus where it serves as a pheromone beacon to attract other bees and provoke them stings.


    This article is licensed under the GNU Free Documentation License. It uses material from the Wikipedia article "Isoamyl_acetate". A list of authors is available in Wikipedia.
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