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Lauric acid

Lauric acid
Skeletal formula of lauric acid
IUPAC name
Dodecanoic acid
Other names
n-Dodecanoic acid, Dodecylic acid, Dodecoic acid, Laurostearic acid, Vulvic acid, 1-Undecanecarboxylic acid, Duodecylic acid, C12:0 (Lipid numbers)
143-07-7 YesY
3D model (Jmol) Interactive image
ChemSpider 3756 N
ECHA InfoCard 100.005.075
EC Number 205-582-1
PubChem 3893
Molar mass 200.32 g·mol−1
Appearance White powder
Odor Slight odor of bay oil
Density 1.007 g/cm3 (24 °C)
0.8744 g/cm3 (41.5 °C)
0.8679 g/cm3 (50 °C)
Melting point 43.8 °C (110.8 °F; 316.9 K)
Boiling point 297.9 °C (568.2 °F; 571.0 K)
282.5 °C (540.5 °F; 555.6 K)
at 512 mmHg
225.1 °C (437.2 °F; 498.2 K)
at 100 mmHg
37 mg/L (0 °C)
55 mg/L (20 °C)
63 mg/L (30 °C)
72 mg/L (45 °C)
83 mg/L (100 °C)
Solubility Soluble in alcohols, (C2H5)2O, phenyls, haloalkanes, acetates
Solubility in methanol 12.7 g/100 g (0 °C)
120 g/100 g (20 °C)
2250 g/100 g (40 °C)
Solubility in acetone 8.95 g/100 g (0 °C)
60.5 g/100 g (20 °C)
1590 g/100 g (40 °C)
Solubility in ethyl acetate 9.4 g/100 g (0 °C)
52 g/100 g (20 °C)
1250 g/100 g (40 °C)
Solubility in toluene 15.3 g/100 g (0 °C)
97 g/100 g (20 °C)
1410 g/100 g (40 °C)
log P 4.6
Vapor pressure 2.13·10−6 kPa (25 °C)
0.42 kPa (150 °C)
6.67 kPa (210 °C)
Acidity (pKa) 5.3 (20 °C)
Thermal conductivity 0.442 W/m·K (solid)
0.1921 W/m·K (72.5 °C)
0.1748 W/m·K (106 °C)
1.423 (70 °C)
1.4183 (82 °C)
Viscosity 6.88 cP (50 °C)
5.37 cP (60 °C)
Monoclinic (α-form)
Triclinic, aP228 (γ-form)
P21/a, No. 14 (α-form)
P1, No. 2 (γ-form)
2/m (α-form)
1 (γ-form)
a = 9.524 Å, b = 4.965 Å, c = 35.39 Å (α-form)
α = 90°, β = 129.22°, γ = 90°
404.28 J/mol·K
−775.6 kJ/mol
7377 kJ/mol
7425.8 kJ/mol (292 K)
GHS pictograms The corrosion pictogram in the Globally Harmonized System of Classification and Labelling of Chemicals (GHS)
GHS signal word Danger
Irritant Xi
R-phrases R36/38
S-phrases S24/25, S26, S36/39
NFPA 704
Flammability code 1: Must be pre-heated before ignition can occur. Flash point over 93 °C (200 °F). E.g., canola oil Health code 1: Exposure would cause irritation but only minor residual injury. E.g., turpentine Reactivity code 1: Normally stable, but can become unstable at elevated temperatures and pressures. E.g., calcium Special hazards (white): no codeNFPA 704 four-colored diamond
Flash point > 113 °C (235 °F; 386 K)
Related compounds
Related compounds
Glyceryl laurate
Except where otherwise noted, data are given for materials in their standard state (at 25 °C [77 °F], 100 kPa).
N  (what is YesYN ?)
Infobox references

Lauric acid or systematically, dodecanoic acid, is a saturated fatty acid with a 12-carbon atom chain, thus falling into the medium chain fatty acids, is a white, powdery solid with a faint odor of baby oil or soap. The salts and esters of lauric acid are known as laurates.

Lauric acid, as a component of triglycerides, comprises about half of the fatty acid content in coconut milk, coconut oil, laurel oil, and palm kernel oil (not to be confused with palm oil), Otherwise, it is relatively uncommon. It is also found in human breast milk (6.2% of total fat), cow's milk (2.9%), and goat's milk (3.1%).

Like many other fatty acids, lauric acid is inexpensive, has a long shelf-life, is non-toxic and is safe to handle. It is used mainly for the production of soaps and cosmetics. For these purposes, lauric acid is reacted with sodium hydroxide to give sodium laurate, which is a soap. Most commonly, sodium laurate is obtained by saponification of various oils, such as coconut oil. These precursors give mixtures of sodium laurate and other soaps.

In the laboratory, lauric acid may be used to investigate the molar mass of an unknown substance via the freezing-point depression. The choice of lauric acid is convenient because the melting point of the pure compound is relatively high (43.8 °C). Its cryoscopic constant is 3.9 °C·kg/mol. By melting lauric acid with the unknown substance, allowing it to cool, and recording the temperature at which the mixture freezes, the molar mass of the unknown compound may be determined.



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