Chaim Weizmann Father Of Industrial Fermentation | Acetone Production Through Bacterial Fermentation

Chaim Weizmann – father of industrial fermentation

Category : Personalities
Published by : Data Research Analyst, Worldofchemicals.com

Biography & contributions

Chaim Weizmann was a Russian-born Israeli chemist born on November 27, 1874 - died on November 09, 1952. Weizmann was also a biochemist who developed the acetone-butanol-ethanol fermentation process, which produces acetone through bacterial fermentation.

Weizmann is considered to be the father of industrial fermentation. He used the bacterium Clostridium acetobutylicum to produce acetone. Weizmann developed the ABE-process, which produces acetone through bacterial fermentation.

Facts about Acetone


Acetone is the organic compound with the formula (CH3)2CO. It is a colorless, volatile, flammable liquid, and is the simplest ketone. Acetone is miscible with water and serves as an important solvent in its own right, typically for cleaning purposes in the laboratory. Acetone is produced over 6.5 million tonnes are produced each year. Acetone is produced and disposed of in the human body through normal metabolic processes.

Acetone is produced directly or indirectly from propylene. Approximately 83% of acetone is produced via the cumene process. In the cumene process, benzene is alkylated with propylene to produce cumene, which is oxidized by air to produce phenol and acetone.

Acetone is a good solvent for many plastics and some synthetic fibers. It is used for thinning polyester resin, cleaning tools used with it, and dissolving two-part epoxies and superglue before they harden. It is used as one of the volatile components of some paints and varnishes.

It is also useful for high reliability soldering applications to remove rosin flux after soldering is complete. Acetone is used as a solvent by the pharmaceutical industry and as a denaturant in denatured alcohol. Acetone is also present as an excipient in some pharmaceutical drugs. Acetone is used to synthesize methyl methacrylate. It begins with the initial conversion of acetone to acetone cyanohydrins. Acetone is used in a variety of general medical and cosmetic applications and is also listed as a component in food additives and food packaging.

Acetone is often the primary component in cleaning agents such as nail polish remover. Acetone is a component of superglue remover and easily removes residues from glass and porcelain. It can also be used in combination with automatic transmission fluid to create effective penetrating oil. Acetone is used primarily in the production of commercial products such as acrylic plastics, which are used for glazing, signs, lighting fixtures and displays. Acetone is also used in the production of Bisphenol A (BPA) which is manufactured from acetone and phenol.

Acetone has been rated as a generally recognized as safe (GRAS) substance when present in beverages, baked foods, desserts, and preserves at concentrations ranging from 5 to 8 mg/L.

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