Adipic Acid

TCC’s Adipic Acid is a mildly toxic, white, crystalline compound. The C6 straight-chain dicarboxylic acid is slightly soluble in water and soluble in alcohol and acetone. Nearly all commercial adipic acid is produced from cyclohexane.

Almost 90 percent of adipic acid produced is used in the production of nylon 66. The nylon, which has a protein-like structure, is further processed into fibers for applications in carpeting, automobile tire cord, and clothing. Adipic acid is also used to manufacture plasticizers and lubricant components.

Food grade adipic acid is used as a gelling aid, an acidulant, and as a leavening and buffering agent.

TCC ships adipic acid throughout the continental United States with one (1) week lead time. Call (401) 360-2800 for details.


The majority of the 2.5 billion kg of adipic acid produced annually is used as a monomer for the production of nylon by a polycondensation reaction with hexamethylene diamine forming 6,6-nylon. Other applications include some Polyurethanes. Esters of Adipic Acid, such as DOA (Di-2-Ethylhexyl Adipate) are used as plasticizers for PolyVinyl Chloride (PVC) resins.

Adipic acid has been incorporated into controlled-release tablets to obtain a pH-independent release for both weakly basic and weakly acidic drugs. It has also been incorporated into polymeric coatings of hydrophilic monolithic systems to modulate the pH, resulting in zero-order release of a hydrophilic drug.

In foods, small but significant amounts of adipic acid are used as a food ingredient as a flavorant and gelling aid. It is used in some calcium carbonate antacids to make them tart.


LGA Adipic Acid Spec Sheet – The Chemical Company

FFA Adipic Acid Spec Sheet – The Chemical Company


TCC’s Adipic acid is available for shipping throughout the continental United States with one (1) week lead time. Please call (401) 360-2800 for details. Adipic acid is available in 25kg bags, 500kg supersacks, 1,000kg supersacks, and in bulk pneumatic trucks.


Adipic acid is an organic compound with the formula (CH2)4(COOH)2. It is the most important of the dicarboxylic acids from the industrial perspective. Approximately 2.5 billion kilograms of this white crystalline powder are produced annually, predominantly as a precursor for the production of nylon 66. Adipic acid rarely occurs in nature.

Historically, adipic acid was prepared from various fats by oxidation. Currently, adipic acid is made from a mixture of cyclohexanone and cyclohexanol called “KA oil,” the abbreviation of “ketone-alcohol oil.” The KA oil is oxidized using nitric acid to produce adipic acid, via a multistep pathway. Early in the reaction, cyclohexane is converted to the ketone, which releases the nitrous acid.

Several methods have been developed by carbonylation of butadiene. For example, the hydrocarboxylation proceeds as follows:


A method has been reported that uses principles of green chemistry where water is the only by-product. Cyclohexene is oxidized with hydrogen peroxide using a tungstate-based catalyst and a phase transfer catalyst. Again, the only waste product is water.

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