Hexamethylenetetramine or methenamine is a heterocyclic organic compound with the formula C6H12N4. This white crystalline compound is highly soluble in water and polar organic solvents. It has a cage-like structure similar to adamantane. It is useful in the synthesis of other chemical compounds, e.g., plastics, pharmaceuticals, rubber additives. It sublimes in vacuum at 280 Â°C.
Hexamethylenetetramine is prepared industrially by reacting formaldehyde and ammonia. The reaction can be conducted in gas phase and in solution.
One of the major uses of Hexamine is in the manufacture of dinitrosopentamethylene-tetramine, a blowing agent for rubber.
It is used as a catalyst in the manufacture of Bakelite phenol formaldehyde molding powders.
It is used as a basic raw material in slurry explosives.
It has many other applications in the manufacture of plastics, paints, foundry resins, textiles, plywood, laminated sheets, cement, fertilizers, pesticides, solid fuel tablets etc.
Unstabilized Hexamine is used in adhesives, coatings and sealing compounds, in the preservation of hides, as cross-linking agent for hardening phenol-formaldehyde resins and vulcanizing rubber, as corrosion inhibitor for steel, as dye fixative, as fuel tablets for camping stoves, as stabilizer for lubricating and insulating oils, for manufacture of explosives, chemical detection of metals and as an urinary antiseptic.
Stabilized Hexamine is used in process industry, as per the requirements of specific customers.