Isophorone is an α,β-Unsaturated cyclic ketone, a colorless to yellowish liquid with characteristic smell, that is used as a solvent and as an intermediate in organic synthesis. Isophorone also occurs naturally in cranberries.
Isophorone can be manufactured by catalyzed self-condensation of acetone.Mesityl oxide is the initial product of the self-aldol condensation of acetone. The mesityl oxide formed can react further with acetone via a Michael reaction and subsequent intramolecular aldol condensation to eventually obtain the six-membered ring of isophorone. This is an example of the Robinson annulation. The yield of the two compounds depends on the reaction conditions.
The use ofisophorone as a solvent resulted from the search for ways to dispose of or recycle acetone, which is a waste product of phenol synthesis by the Hock method.Isophorone is used as a solvent in some printing inks, paints, lacquers, adhesives, copolymers, coatings, finishings and pesticides.It is also used as a chemical intermediate and as an ingredient in wood preservatives and floor sealants.
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