Methanol, also known as wood alcohol, methyl alcohol, or wood spirit, is the simplest form of alcohol, which chemical formula is CH3OH. Methanol is produced by the destructive distillation of wood. It is volatile, toxic, and flammable. This colorless liquid is mainly used as an intermediate in chemical synthesis, as a solvent, antifreeze, and as a source of environmentally friendly fuel.


  • Environmentally friendly fuel.
  • Lower flammability risk than fuel.
  • Can be made into hydrogen.
  • Easier to store than hydrogen.


Methanol is frequently used as a solvent in laboratories. It can be converted into formaldehyde which is then used to make products such as plastics, paint, and explosives. It can also be used as fuel which drastically reduces the emissions of toxins. Methanol can be also used to produces biodiesel. Small amounts of methanol can be used in wastewater converting harmful nitrates to safer nitrogen.

Methanol is also used in in the Military Industry as fuel. It is also used as fuel for camping and boating.

Interesting Facts about Methanol 

  • Methanol is biodegradable
  • Burning methanol does not cause air pollution
  • Using methanol as fuel reduce the changes of a vehicle explosion

Safety & Handling Rules

  • Keep away from heat
  • Do not drink Methanol
  • Avoid skin contact
  • Avoid breathing Methanol’s vapor
  • Wash hands immediately after handling
  • Use only outdoors or in ventilated areas

RESPONSE: If swollen, please call a poison center. If inhaled, take the victim outside for fresh air and keep in a comfortable position while calling a poison center. If on skin: wash with plenty of water and call a poison center if you feel unwell.

Aldehydes and Ketones as Acetone – ppm. wt. max.ASTM-D-161230
Ethanol – ppm. wt. max.Federal O-M-232F (GC Method)50
Acidity (as acetic acid) – ppm. wt. max.ASTM-D-161330
Appearance and HydrocarbonsFederal O-M-232FClear and Colourless
ColourASTM-D-1209Not darker than colour standard No. 5 of ASTM-D-1209
Distillation RangeASTM –D-1078Not more than 1°C and shall include 64.6°C ± 0.10°C at 760mm
Specific Gravity max.ASTM-D-8910.7928 @ 20/20°C
% Methanol by weight min.Specific Gravity method99.9
Non-Volatile content – ppm. wt. max.ASTM-D-13535
OdorASTM-D-1296Characteristic free of foreign odor
Permanganate Fading TimeASTM-D-1363No discharge of colour in 60 minutes
Water – ppm. wt. max.ASTM-D-1364500
Alkalinity (as ammonia) – ppm. wt. max.ASTM-D-16145.0
Iron (Total) – ppm. wt. max.Photometric Orthophenanthroline method0.25ppm
Water miscibilityASTM-D-1722Passes
Chloride as NAC1 – ppm. wt. max.ASTM-D-17220.5ppm


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