What is MTBE?
MTBE (methyl tertiary-butyl ether) is a flammable, clear, colorless liquid with low viscosity, and belongs to the aliphatic ethers as an organic chemical compound. The MTBE molecule is prepared by an acid-catalyzed synthesis of isobutene and methanol.
By using raw materials of renewable origin, we are also able to offer a bio-MTBE with reduced greenhouse gas emissions.
What is MTBE used for?
MTBE is a recognized fuel component and is required as an additive in fuel blending to meet the demands of modern engines. For example, MTBE increases the octane count of gasoline and enables more efficient combustion of fuels in the engine. As a result, MTBE prevents the tendency of gasoline to spontaneously combust (antiknock agent) and thus reduces the emission of harmful exhaust gases such as carbon monoxide, hydrocarbons and volatile organic compounds (VOCs) and particulate matter (PM). The high blend octane number of MTBE also enables the substitution of toxic blend components such as lead, manganese and benzene in gasoline. MTBE thus enables cleaner fuels worldwide, contributes to better air quality, and supports the decarbonization of the transportation sector through the more efficient use of gasoline.
A few technical details
MTBE's blend matrix is extremely popular due to its valuable properties: With the reduced vapor pressure (RVP) of 0,55 bar and the research octane number (RON) of 117, MTBE is highly regarded worldwide as a blend component. MTBE can be synthesized conventionally by etherification of isobutene and methanol or by using raw materials of renewable origin such as biomass. As a result, MTBE has a higher energy density than methyl and ethyl alcohols, enhancing the performance of clean fuels.
Here you will find further product information (e.g. technical data sheet, MSDS, etc.) on MTBE.
Where is the antiknock agent MTBE produced and how is it transported?
In our state-of-the-art C4 network, we process various raw material streams such as crude-C4 or FCC-C4 (Fluid Catalytic Cracking-C4) from steam crackers or refineries. MTBE production at Evonik's two sites in Marl, Germany, and Antwerp, Belgium, provides additional flexibility and increases supply security for our customers worldwide.
We complement our logistics and supply chain expertise with a wide range of transport modes: delivery can be made by rail with tank wagons or by barges and ocean-going vessels.