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Castor oil

Castor oil is an important raw material for the chemical industry and is obtained from the seeds of the miraculous tree. The oil is extracted by pressing and other components of the tropical plant and impurities are removed by refining processes.

The refined oil is used as a medicinal substance, as a solvent for medicines, as an additive in cosmetic products, and as a lubricant for engines and machines. In unmodified or dehydrated form, castor oil is used as a binder for varnishes and paints. It is also used as a raw material for the production of biofuels, dyeing auxiliaries for the textile industry, flavorings and odorants, and the high-quality plastic polyamide-11. Oxidized castor oil is an important plasticizer for polyamides, for synthetic and natural rubbers and for cellulose derivatives.

Hydrogenated castor oil is an effective lubricant in the form of castor wax, which is used in the automotive sector, among other things. It is also used in the manufacture of soaps and cosmetics.

At PENPET you get refined castor oil in liquid form and hydrogenated castor oil as a solid of the highest quality - from a reliable partner who will also meet your requirements in the long term. We look forward to receiving your inquiry for an individual offer. Prompt delivery of the products can be made in packages with different weights.

CAS no. 8001-79-4
EINECS no. 232-293-8

Synonym: ricinus oil

Areas of application: Lubricants, binders for lacquers and paints, solvents for medicinal substances, base material for the production of dyeing auxiliaries, flavorings and fragrances, cosmetic products and polyamide-11, use as a plasticizer for polymer plastics


More Information

As a natural raw material, castor oil is a mixture of different substances. The main component is triricinolein, the triple glyceride of ricinoleic acid. To a lesser extent, the oil contains glycerides of other fatty acids such as oleic acid, linoleic acid, stearic acid and palmitic acid. The predominant ricinoleic acid is an unsaturated fatty acid with 18 carbon atoms, which has a hydroxy group on the twelfth carbon atom. This gives it a polarity unusual for fatty acids, which increases the compound's solubility in polar solvents and, as a reactive site, allows the formation of chemical derivatives.

During the hydrogenation of castor oil, the double bond between the ninth and tenth carbon atom of ricinoleic acid is broken, with the absorption of hydrogen. The resulting castor wax represents the triglyceride of 12-hydroxystearic acid and is suitable as a lubricant for technical applications.

Refined castor oil is a viscous, transparent liquid that appears colorless to slightly yellowish. It has a characteristic odor and taste that has been described as mild but unpleasant. Castor oil is a non-hardening oil that thickens in air but does not harden. Its components gradually solidify at temperatures below -12 °C. Castor oil decomposes when heated above 200°C, producing a lot of smoke, before it would reach its boiling point. It has good solubility in polar solvents such as benzene, diethyl ether, methanol, ethanol, chloroform and concentrated acetic acid. In contrast, the oil is only poorly soluble in water and aliphatic hydrocarbons.

Castor oil is chemically stable and only goes rancid when heated to high temperatures. It reacts with strong oxidizing agents and should be stored in a cool, dry and airtight place. Castor oil is flammable, but not explosive. Its combustion produces hazardous and harmful decomposition products such as carbon dioxide and carbon monoxide.

According to the GHS classification, castor oil is not considered a hazardous substance. However, it can cause redness and painful irritation if it comes into contact with the skin or eye. Ingesting the oil causes severe diarrhea and can lead to dangerous dehydration as a result.

Due to possible damage to aquatic organisms, castor oil is considered a slightly water-polluting substance. Prevent the oil from entering water bodies, the ground or waste water. The competent authorities must be informed of the escape of larger quantities into the environment. Castor oil is not subject to any special transport regulations.

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