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[Union Carbide] A registered trademark for a series of translucent polyethylene glycols and methoxypolyethylene glycols. The water-soluble Carbowax® products are available in a range of viscosities from a honey-like solution to a hard wax-like block. They are used commercially as solvents for dyes, natural resins, and proteins. They are also used as plasticizers for Casein, Gelatin, glue, Zein, Cork, and inks. Carbowax® formulations have also been used to slowly replaced water in water-logged wood providing structural support while decreasing wetness. They, however, remain somewhat tacky and can retain dirt that darkens and discolors the artifact.

Synonyms and Related Terms

PEG; polyethylene glycol; methoxypolyethylene glycol; polietilenglicol (Esp.): metoxipolietilenglicol (Esp.)




  • Potential skin irritant.
  • Combustible. Flash point: 182 - 287 C
  • Dow Chemical: MSDS

Physical and Chemical Properties

  • Soluble in water.
  • CAS# = 25322-68-3

Resources and Citations

  • Richard S. Lewis, Hawley's Condensed Chemical Dictionary, Van Nostrand Reinhold, New York, 10th ed., 1993
  • Marie Svoboda, Conservation Survey Index, unpublished, 1997