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White prisms crystals used as an insecticide, especially in gardens for snails and slugs. In interior spaces, metaldehyde has been used to control cockroaches, ants, and termites. Pellets are used as a solid fuel in ethanol burners.

Synonyms and Related Terms


Chemical structure


Other Properties

Soluble in benzene, chloroform. Slightly soluble in ethanol, ether. Insoluble in water. Sublimes at 112 C.

Composition (CH3CHO)n
CAS 9002-91-9
Melting Point 246
Density 1.27
Molecular Weight mol. wt. = 176.21

Hazards and Safety

Toxic by ingestion. Skin contact causes irritation.

Flammable. Flash point = 97 C.

Fisher Scientific: MSDS


  • Richard S. Lewis, Hawley's Condensed Chemical Dictionary, Van Nostrand Reinhold, New York, 10th ed., 1993
  • The Merck Index, Martha Windholz (ed.), Merck Research Labs, Rahway NJ, 10th edition, 1983 Comment: entry 5983
  • Pam Hatchfield, Pollutants in the Museum Environment, Archetype Press, London, 2002

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