Glycerol – An Authentic Directory For You
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Glycerol – An Authentic Directory For You

Glycerol is a significant chemical molecule that is used as a solvent to reduce the loss of moisture, a textile supplementary, a power and heat communication fluid, and countless other pitches.

Read this article to know this authentic information about this compound’s structure, uses, and properties.

What Actually is Glycerol?

glycerol ester of rosin
glycerol ester of rosin

This word originated from the Greek word Glycos, which means “sweet” and is also termed Glycerine. It is a simple polyol compound that is pale in color and fragrance-free in combination with a sweet taste.

Moreover, In biological arrangements, it is found in lipids (glycerides) and works as a transitional to combine the carbohydrate and lipid molecules for metabolism. However, the excessive molecules of carbohydrates can be transformed into the fatty acid chain, and the glycerine compound links the carbohydrate and lipids molecules. When it is metabolized, it produces antibodies that attract the immune cells.

It’s Wondering: How and Who Discover the Glycerol Molecule?

A Swedish scientist K.W Scheele was exploring the resemblance between soap and cream. On the other side, soap is made from sodium salts of organic salts, whereas lotion is made from main salts of fatty acids. After his experiment, he discovered a water-soluble element with a sweet taste and named the compound (sweet principle of fat).

In addition, in this experiment, he further examines that the substance he discovers is different from other sugars. Because the Glycerine took a more significant amount of nitric acid than the sugar cane, also it is not crystallized. Still, it could be distilled and also decayed at a higher temperature. Furthermore, this substance does not proclaim an alkali when it is countered with ethanol.

Have You Ever Seen Glycerol Structure & What is it made of?

glycerol structure
glycerol structure

There are three hydroxyl groups and three trihydroxy sugar alcohol groups in glycerol. Every single hydroxyl group is covalently bonded with the SP3 configuration. Due to the presence of three hydroxyl groups, that kind is an organic Compound.

However, this molecule is correspondingly prompt as Fischer projection. The carbon atom is presented in the center without the clearance of hydrogen atoms in the molecular structure.

Fischer projection:  Tells the representation of carbohydrates in a molecule.


The chemical formula      =     C3H8O3

The molecular formula    =      CH2OH-CHOH-CH2Oh

  • This compound has three carbons, eight hydrogens, and three oxygen atoms.
  • Three carbon chains are committed to the (OH) hydroxyl Group.
  • IUPAC name is 1,2,3- trihydroxy propane

A French Scientist, Pelouze, explained the chemical formula in 1836. He actually projected the experimental formula C3H8O3. Then this formula was accepted in 1886 on the basis of the practical work CH2OH-CHOH-CH2Oh by the scientist Berthelot and Lucea.

Properties of Glycerol or Glycerin

what is glycerol
what is glycerol

It is an odorless and a bit sweet compound composed of three hydroxyl groups. That’s why it is known as hygroscopic. These three groups respond with many organic acids to form new molecules. Check some of the other crucial properties of glycerin.

Glycerol Properties
1 Chemical formula C3H8O3
2 Boiling point 290 degrees
3 Melting point 17.8 degrees
4 Density 1.261 g/cm
5 Form Liquid
6 PH level 5.5
7 Vapor pressure <1 mmHg
8 Grade Reagent
9 Molecular weight or mass 92.09 g/mol
10 Chemical composition Solvent


  • The vapor pressure of glycerin is about <1 mmHg, which is owed to the occurrence of the three hydroxyls, making the compound hygroscopic (tending to absorb moisture from the air).
  • It is more solid than water and has a density of 1.26 grams.
  • The Glycerine has a boiling point of 290℃ degrees and also decays at that temperature. Meanwhile, its melting point is 17.8℃

What is Glycerol Used For & It’s Uses in Different Industries

glycerol molecule
glycerol molecule

Glycerine is a naturally stirring chemical compound. It is commonly found in plant & animal cells and transpires in triglycerides. However, it is used in many medical, cosmetics, food, and fuel industries.

Now let’s hover over the different uses of Glycerine in diverse industries.

What does Glycerol do in the Medical Field?

  • Cough Syrup: Glycerine is an addition to cough syrups to stop the irritation in pharynges that initiate coughing.
  • Medicines: It can progress the taste of medication and softness to make it easier to swallow the pill.
  • Treat the Wounds: It can also treat wounds and deep burns because it has an antiviral agent and antimicrobic possessions. Other than that, it may correspondingly help to decrease the soreness in the wound part.
  • Skin: People who have xerosis can use the products that hold Glycerols. That may help to decrease the itchiness on the skin.
  • Blood Bank: Another essential usage of it is in the blood bank. This compound is used to reserve the red blood cells before they are frozen for storage.

Diverse Uses of Glycerol in Food Manufacturing

  • This glycerine compound is massively adding to the making of many foods and beverages as a saccharine agent.
  • It also works as a thickening agent in liqueurs manufacture, making the cocktail taste wonderful. Due to its low toxicity and absence of unpleasant aroma, this molecule works as an emulsifier.
  • Some food and beverage merchandise have to hold the humidity so that added Glycerine can help retain its moisture.
  • This substance has the skill to make intermolecular hydrogen bonds which help to preserve the food for the long term.

Exceptional Usage of Glycerine or Glycerol in Cosmetics

  • The soothing properties of glycerin retain moisture in skincare and makeup kinds of stuff.
  • The compound improves skin care products, including moisturizers, shaving creams, serums, and many other products, to protect the skin from irritations.
  • It can also help keep the moisture and smoothness on the skin’s surface by adding hair conditioners, eye drops, and cosmetic foundations.
  • It also adds to cosmetic products like eye shades, blush-on, nail paints, mascara, eyeliner, and many products to prevent them from drying out.

Frequent Applications in Other Product Manufacturing Fields

  • Glyceride works as biofuel used in industries to make soya and other vegetable oil. Due to its contamination property, this compound can make wood alcohol, salts, detergents, and soaps.
  • They are also working on making the structures of buildings and in mechanical productions.
  • The glyceride compound works to bond in the making of paints, gums, and waxes.
  • Another use in this field is that used to make urethane sprays.

Let’s look at the uses of glycerol in other applications and how professionals use it for manufacturing purposes.

  • Generators: Some diesel generators are motorized and start with this compound.
  • Ultrasound: In ultrasound testing, it works as an alternate because it develops sound resistance.
  • Film Industry:Also, people extensively use glycerol in the film industry during scenes, including water scenes. Therefore, glycerin supports and stops the filmy area from drying out.

Final Words

That’s all about this guide. We hope this article will help you understand more about glycerol history, construction, and physical and chemical possessions. So let us know in the comment section if you have any questions or confusion about this directory guide.

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