Air & Water Reactions
Highly flammable. Soluble in water and may decompose upon contact with water.
Behavior in Fire: Containers may explode in fire. Use water to cool container from safe distance.
Epoxides, such as 1,2-EPOXYBUTANE, are highly reactive. They polymerize in the presence of catalysts or when heated. Contact with anhydrous metal halides; amino, hydroxyl and carboxyl functions; inorganic acids and charcoal may cause polymerization. These polymerization reactions can be violent. Compounds in this group react with acids, bases, and oxidizing and reducing agents. They react, possibly violently with water in the presence of acid and other catalysts.
colourless liquid with an unpleasant smell
A clear colorless volatile liquid with an ethereal odor. Flash point near 0°F. Density about 6.9 lb / gal. Soluble in water. Boiling point near 140°F. Flammable over a wide range of vapor-air concentrations. May polymerize with the evolution of heat and possible rupture of container if contaminated. Vapors irritate eyes, skin and respiratory system. Prolonged contact with skin may cause in delayed burns. Vapors are heavier than air. Used as an intermediate to make various polymers. Chemicals that polymerize are often stabilized by refrigeration.
Inhalation: intolerable odor and irritation; respiratory injury may occur at higher levels. Ingestion causes irritation of mouth and stomach. Contact with either liquid or vapor may cause burns of eyes. Liquid produces frostbite-type of skin burn if free to evaporate; if confined to skin, burn may cause skin sensitization; not readily absorbed in toxic amounts.
Dry it with CaSO4, and fractionally distil it through a long (126cm) glass helices-packed column. The first fraction contains a water azeotrope. [Beilstein 17 II 17.]