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Butanol price index

This post is a summary of the Butanol/Butyl alcohol price developments. The price developments of Butanol/Butyl alcohol are expressed in US$ prices converted FX rates applicable at the time when the price was valid. Butanol/Butyl alcohol price index developments are calculated from multiple separate sources of data to ensure statistical accuracy.

The outlook for Butanol/Butyl alcohol prices, on the second tab, is generated from different inputs including:

  • Very recent price developments of immediate cost drivers of Butanol/Butyl alcohol prices
  • Recent price developments of underlying feedstocks which drive the price of Butanol/Butyl alcohol
  • Market futures for both cost drives and feedstocks of Butanol/Butyl alcohol prices
  • Adjustment of current supply/demand imbalances in the Butanol/Butyl alcohol market
  • Longer term trends in likely demand conditions

Further sources of information on the Butanol price index

 

What is Butanol

Butanol, also known as butyl alcohol, is a chemical compound with the formula C4H10O. It is a clear, colorless liquid with a sweet, pungent smell and a burning taste. Butanol is highly flammable and can be dangerous if handled improperly.

Butanol is produced by the fermentation of sugars or the hydration of butadiene. It is used as a solvent, a feedstock for the production of chemicals, and a fuel.

It is worth noting that butanol is toxic and can cause irritation to the skin, eyes, and respiratory system. It should be handled with caution and used in a well-ventilated area.

 

How is Butanol produced

There are several methods for producing butanol, including fermentation and the hydration of butadiene. The most common method for producing butanol is fermentation, which involves the conversion of sugars to butanol by microorganisms.

The fermentation process typically involves the following steps:

Preparation of the feedstock

The feedstock for butanol fermentation is typically a sugar or a starch, such as corn, wheat, or molasses. The feedstock is ground and mixed with water to form a slurry, which is then heated to convert the sugars or starch to simple sugars, such as glucose and fructose.

Fermentation

The simple sugars are then fermented by microorganisms, such as bacteria or yeast, to produce butanol and other products. The microorganisms are added to the slurry in the form of a starter culture and are allowed to grow and multiply. The fermentation process is typically carried out at a controlled temperature and pH to optimize the production of butanol.

Separation and purification

The butanol is then separated from the other products of fermentation, typically by distillation. The butanol is then purified and concentrated to give the final product.

The other method for producing butanol is the hydration of butadiene, which involves the reaction of butadiene with water in the presence of a catalyst to produce butanol. This method is less commonly used due to the high cost of butadiene.

 

What is Butanol used for

Butanol has a number of industrial uses, including:

Solvent

Butanol is used as a solvent in a variety of applications, including the production of paints, coatings, inks, and adhesives.

Feedstock

Butanol is used as a feedstock for the production of a variety of chemicals, including butyl acetate, butyl acrylate, and 2-ethylhexanol.

Fuel

Butanol can be used as a fuel in internal combustion engines and can be blended with gasoline to improve its performance.

Other uses

Butanol is also used in the production of cosmetics, pharmaceuticals, and other products.

 

What different types of Butanol are there

There are several types of butanol that are used in industry and research:

Primary butanol

This is the most common form of butanol, with the formula C4H10O. It is a clear, colorless liquid with a sweet, pungent smell and a burning taste.

Secondary butanol

This is a type of butanol with the formula C4H10O that has two carbon atoms on the same side of the molecule. It is a clear, colorless liquid with a sweet, pungent smell and a burning taste.

Tertiary butanol

This is a type of butanol with the formula C4H10O that has three carbon atoms on the same side of the molecule. It is a clear, colorless liquid with a sweet, pungent smell and a burning taste.

Butyl acetate

This is a type of butanol derivative with the formula C6H12O2. It is a colorless liquid with a sweet, fruity smell and is used as a solvent and a feedstock for the production of other chemicals.

Butyl acrylate

This is a type of butanol derivative with the formula C6H10O2. It is a colorless liquid with a sweet, pungent smell and is used as a monomer in the production of polymers and resins.

2-Ethylhexanol

This is a type of butanol derivative with the formula C8H18O. It is a colorless liquid with

 

How big is the Butanol market

The global butanol market is valued at billions of dollars and is expected to continue to grow in the coming years due to the increasing demand for butanol as a solvent, a feedstock for the production of chemicals, and a fuel. The Asia-Pacific region is the largest market for butanol, followed by North America and Europe.

The demand for butanol is driven by a number of factors, including the increasing use of butanol as a solvent in the production of paints, coatings, inks, and adhesives, and the growing use of butanol as a feedstock for the production of chemicals, such as butyl acetate and butyl acrylate. The use of butanol as a fuel is also expected to increase in the coming years due to its potential as a renewable alternative to gasoline.

According to https://oec.world/ :

N-butyl alcohol are the world’s 2563rd most traded product.

In 2020, the top exporters of N-butyl alcohol were South Africa ($117M), Chinese Taipei ($108M), Malaysia ($60.9M), Saudi Arabia ($60.6M), and United States ($57.3M).

In 2020, the top importers of N-butyl alcohol were China ($183M), Belgium ($77.6M), Germany ($66.4M), India ($38.7M), and South Korea ($31.8M).

 

Further information

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Notes on the price-data

  • We are continually improving our data collection and processing methods and data will be updated from time to time as we improve the accuracy
  • We are working hard to upgrade the algorithm before April 1, 2023 and a further fine-tune by July 1, 2023
  • This the index trend of the price of the product group in general and not a single specification in particular
  • The data is presented in US$
  • The chart shows the price trend,  nearly always taken from many statistically-correlated sources