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Dimethyl sulfone is used as a high-temperature solvent for both inorganic and organic substances. It acts as an intermediate as well as medium in organic synthesis. It plays an important role as a carbon source by the airborne bacteria Afipia. It is also employed as an extraction solvent for the separation of aromatic compounds like benzene, toluene and xylenes from aliphatic hydrocarbons. Further, it is used in the polymerization process. It finds application in pharmaceuticals, agrochemicals, paint and coating materials.
Deprotonation with NaH, followed by reaction with esters, gives ß-keto sulfones which can be reductively cleaved with Cr(II) or Zn/AcOH: Coll. Czech. Chem. Commun., 39, 1216 (1974):
Hofmann, A.; Hanemann, T. Novel electrolyte mixtures based on dimethyl sulfone, ethylene carbonate and LiPF6 for lithium-ion batteries. J. Power Sources 2015, 298, 322-330.
Pan, H.; Yang, J.; Wang, S.; Xiong, Z.; Cai, W.; Liu, J. Facile fabrication of porous carbon nanofibers by electrospun PAN/dimethyl sulfone for capacitive deionization. J. Mater. Chem. A 2015, 3 (26), 13827-13834.
Hazard Statements: H315-H319
Causes skin irritation. Causes serious eye irritation.
Precautionary Statements: P264b-P280-P302+P352-P305+P351+P338-P332+P313-P337+P313-P362
Wash face, hands and any exposed skin thoroughly after handling Wear protective gloves/protective clothing/eye protection/face protection. IF ON SKIN: Wash with plenty of soap and water. IF IN EYES: Rinse cautiously with water for several minutes. Remove contact lenses, if present and easy to do. Continue rinsing. If skin irritation occurs: Get medical advice/attention. If eye irritation persists: Take off contaminated clothing and wash before reuse.