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Physical & Chemical properties

Stability: thermal, sunlight, metals

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Description of key information

Gaseous ethylene oxide may decompose violently when coming in contact with an ignition source.

Additional information

Gaseous ethylene oxide starts to decompose at ca. 400 °C to form mainly CO, CH4, as well as C2H6, C2H4, H2, C, and

CH3CHO. The first step in the decomposition is presumed to be the isomerization of ethylene oxide to acetaldehyde [30]. Once the decomposition reaction has been initiated (ignition source), it can be propagated through the gas phase and, under certain conditions, may be explosive.

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