Chemicals & Polymers Blog
Explore Gantrade's News & Industry Articles

5 Key Facts on MPO

published on May 13, 2022

Gantrade offers 2-Methyl 1, 3- Propanediol (MPO), also known as methyl propanediol, to enhance unsaturated polyester resins, including both composites and gelcoats, as well as saturated polyester for coatings polyurethane, polycarbonate, and much more.

Let’s take a look at five key facts about MPO, a key diol used by Gantrade’s customers around the world.


1. MPO is a low viscosity liquid diol over a wide temperature range which gives users a major processing advantage.

With a freeze point of -54°C there is no issue with crystallization on storage compared with other glycols such as 1,4 butanediol (BDO). MPO is much easier to handle and process compared with neopentyl glycol (NPG). Since NPG is supplied either in a solid form (melting point 127°C) which requires pre-heating or heated storage for processing or as a 90% slurry in water (this water must be removed during processing, requiring additional, often critical processing time).

With a boiling point of 212°C, there is scope to produce polyesters with MPO with less energy wasted due to vaporization. Due to having a higher boiling point than NPG, it can be used as a companion diol in NPG-based polyesters and helps keep reactor vessels clear of NPG crystallization deposits.


2. MPO contains primary hydroxyl groups for optimizing processing speed.

MPO, which contains primary hydroxyl groups, tends to have a higher reactivity compared with chain extenders containing secondary functionality such as mono- and di-propylene glycol. This higher reactivity relative to chain extenders, in turn, leads to a higher processing speed. When processors can work at greater speed, they are able to reduce energy consumption and other time-dependent costs such as labor.  


3. MPO contains a methyl side chain that enables multiple performance characteristics.

MPO’s methyl side chain inhibits crystallization of polymers produced using MPO, which leads to reduced viscosities of polyester resins and prepolymers produced with MPO when compared with other diols such BDO and NPG. 

The side chain improves compatibility with high molecular weight polyols compared with BDO. In addition, it reduces hydrophilic properties but without loss of solubility in polar solvents or in water and improves abrasion resistance, hydrolysis resistance in polyester resins containing MPO, as well as weatherability and dyeability. 


4. MPO is non-hazardous. 

A very safe diol, MPO is non-hazardous and can be used in a wide range of consumer applications, including cosmetics, detergents, and personal care. MPO is FDA-approved and isn’t regulated product (unlike BDO which is a drug-precursor).


5. MPO is more cost-effective than other glycols.

Due to its relatively recent arrival to the market, MPO is available at a lower cost relative to other glycols. Customers are still discovering MPO and finding new ways to take advantage of its range of unique properties. 


Learn More About MPO From the Experts

While we are already seeing great value for applications of MPO in the marketplace, we will undoubtedly see even greater innovation in this fascinating and versatile diol.

For more than 40 years, processors worldwide have considered Gantrade their supplier of choice for chemical products that enhance their product offerings in spaces like paint and coatings, adhesives and sealants, construction, packaging, polyurethane intermediates, and much more. Our customers find value in our ability to deliver market insights, technical expertise, and steady supply of product to meet their product performance and processing requirements. Contact our team of technical experts to start a conversation about your MPO needs

Topics: Diols, MPO