Title: Ethephon
CAS Registry Number: 16672-87-0
CAS Name: (2-Chloroethyl)phosphonic acid
Additional Names: 2-chloroethanephosphonic acid; CEPA; camposan
Trademarks: Cerone (Bayer CropSci.); Ethrel (Bayer CropSci.); Prep (Bayer CropSci.)
Molecular Formula: C2H6ClO3P
Molecular Weight: 144.49
Percent Composition: C 16.62%, H 4.19%, Cl 24.54%, O 33.22%, P 21.44%
Line Formula: ClCH2CH2PO(OH)2
Literature References: Ethylene-releasing agent used to control growth and ripening of fruit crops. Prepn: Kabachnik, Rossiiskaya, Izv. Akad. Nauk SSSR Otd. Khim. Nauk 1946, 403-410, C.A. 42, 7242e (1948); Beilstein EIII 4, 1780. Toxicity data: G. Hennighausen et al., Pharmazie 32, 181 (1977). Review of use in viticulture: E. Szyjewicz et al., Am. J. Enol. Vitic. 35, 117-123 (1984).
Properties: Very hygroscopic needles from benzene (must be dried over P2O5). mp 74-75°. Freely sol in water, methanol, acetone, ethylene glycol, propylene glycol. Slightly sol in benzene, toluene. Practically insol in petr ether. Aq solns are stable below pH 3.5. Above pH 3.5 hydrolysis begins with the release of free ethylene. LD50 orally in mice: 2850 mg/kg (Hennighausen).
Melting point: mp 74-75°
Toxicity data: LD50 orally in mice: 2850 mg/kg (Hennighausen)
CAUTION: Spray formulations are quite acidic, about pH 1.0. May be irritating to exposed skin and eyes, or if inhaled.
Use: Plant growth regulator.

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