The isocyanates are commonly used in industry. Diisocyanates are used in the production of polyurethane foams and elastomers, in phenol-formaldehyde resins to improve water and alkali resistance, in some paints such as automotive enamels and for bonding rubber to rayon or nylon. Monoisocyanates are often used in the treatment of cellulose and the production of some pesticides.
The structural difference among the isocyanate compounds determines their physical/chemical properties which can affect their toxicity. Some isocyanates such as methylene diphenylisocyanate are solids at room temperature while others such as toluene diisocyanate or methyl isocyanate are readily vaporized liquids, and thus, have a higher likelihood of being inhaled at toxic concentrations.
Isocyanates react violently with bases, secondary or primary amines, acids, and alcohols. They should not be stored near these chemicals. These isocyanates may also react with water to produce a water-insoluble urea and carbon dioxide. Isocyanates should, therefore, be stored in closed containers to prevent water from entering because the water-isocyanate reaction can generate enough pressure to rupture containers. Stored isocyanates should also be protected from heat and direct sunlight because breakdown of the product may occur in such conditions.
The unreacted form (monomer) of an isocyanate is typically more toxic and more explosive than its reacted form (polymer). Thus, the more incomplete its polymerization, the more dangerous is the resulting compound.
Industries we customize for:
- Shoe Sole
- Automotive Seats
- Pipe Insulation
- Cold Storage
- Sandwich Panels
- Spray Insulation