Zinc acetate is a salt with the formula Zn(CH3CO2)2, which commonly occurs as the dihydrate Zn(CH3CO2)2·2H2O. Both the hydrate and the anhydrous forms are colorless solids that are commonly used in chemical synthesis and as dietary supplements. Zinc acetates are prepared by the action of acetic acid on zinc carbonate or zinc metal. When used as a food additive, it has the E number E650.
Acetic acid, Zinc salt
Acetic acid, Zinc(II) salt
3D model (JSmol)
|E number||E650 (flavour enhancer)|
CompTox Dashboard (EPA)
|Molar mass||219.50 g/mol (dihydrate)|
183.48 g/mol (anhydrous)
|Appearance||White solid (all forms)|
|Density||1.735 g/cm3 (dihydrate)|
|Melting point||Decomposes at 237 °C (459 °F; 510 K) (dihydrate loses water at 100 °C)|
|43 g/100 mL (20 °C, dihydrate)|
|Solubility||1.5 g/100 mL (methanol)|
|−101.0·10−6 cm3/mol (+2 H2O)|
|Main hazards||mildly toxic|
|R-phrases (outdated)||R22 R36 R50/53|
|S-phrases (outdated)||S26 S60 S61|
|Basic beryllium acetate|
Except where otherwise noted, data are given for materials in their standard state (at 25 °C [77 °F], 100 kPa).
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Dietary and medicinal applicationsEdit
Zinc acetate has been used in lozenges for treating the common cold. Zinc acetate can also be used to treat zinc deficiencies. As an oral daily supplement it is used to inhibit the body's absorption of copper as part of the treatment for Wilson's disease. Zinc acetate is also sold as an astringent in the form of an ointment, a topical lotion, or combined with an antibiotic such as erythromycin for the topical treatment of acne. It is commonly sold as a topical anti-itch ointment.
Industrial applications include wood preservation, manufacturing other zinc salts, polymers, manufacture of ethyl acetate, as a dye mordant, and analytical reagent. It is used in commercial nuclear power plants as a plating inhibitor on primary water piping.
Basic properties and structuresEdit
In anhydrous zinc acetate the zinc is coordinated to four oxygen atoms to give a tetrahedral environment, these tetrahedral polyhedra are then interconnected by acetate ligands to give a range of polymeric structures. In contrast, most metal diacetates feature metals in octahedral coordination with bidentate acetate groups.
Basic zinc acetateEdit
Heating Zn(CH3CO2)2 in a vacuum results in a loss of acetic anhydride, leaving a residue of basic zinc acetate, with the formula Zn4O(CH3CO2)6. This cluster compound has the tetrahedral structure shown below. This species closely resembles the corresponding beryllium compound, although it is slightly expanded with Zn-O distances ~1.97 vs ~1.63 Å for Be4O(OAc)6.
- Basic beryllium acetate - isostructural
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- van Niekerk, J. N.; Schoening, F. R. L.; Talbot, J. H. (10 September 1953). "The crystal structure of zinc acetate dihydrate, Zn(CH3COO)2.2H2O". Acta Crystallographica. 6 (8): 720–723. doi:10.1107/S0365110X53002015.
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