Formic Acid

Definition - What does Formic Acid mean?

Formic acid is the simple form of carboxylic acid, and is also known by the systematic IUPAC name as methanoic acid. Formic acid has the chemical formula HCOOH. It is formed naturally in the venom of bees and ants, and is considered an important intermediate in chemical synthesis. For commercial purposes formic acid is primarily used as a preservative and antibacterial agent.

Formic acid may also be known as methanoic acid.

Corrosionpedia explains Formic Acid

Formic acid has a propensity to mix with water, polar organic solvents and some types of hydrocarbons because it contains hydrogen atoms that can be combined with some hydrocarbons.

Formic acid is corrosive to metals and organic tissues. Since it is a simple form of carboxylic acid, it occurs in forms of acetic acids and amino acids and is the main ingredient in vinegar.

Some properties of formic acid:

  • Pungent odor
  • Colorless
  • Flash point: 68.9°C (156°F)
  • Molar mass: 46.03 g/mol
  • Density: 1.22 g/ml
  • Melting point: 8.4°C (47.1°F)
  • Boiling point: 100°C (212°F)
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