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A colourless fuming liquid that smells of ammonia, H2NCH2CH2NH2; b.p. 116°C. It is made from ammonia and 1,2-dichloroethane, which are heated under pressure with a copper(I) chloride catalyst. In air it absorbs water and carbon dioxide to form diaminoethane carbamate. With fatty acids diaminoethane produces soaps, employed as emulsifying agents and detergents. It is also used as a solvent (for resins) and in making coatings, paper and textiles. Crystals of its tartrate derivative are employed in piezoelectric devices. It is a bidentate ligand, given the symbol en in formulae.

Subjects: Chemistry.

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