Adipic acid or hexanedioic acid is the organic compound with the formula (CH₂) ₄ (CO₂H) ₂. From the industrial point of view, it is the most important dicarboxylic acid: about 2.5 billion kilograms of this white crystalline powder are produced every year, mainly as a precursor of nylon production.
Adipic acid has various applications in the industry:
The main application is its use as a monomer for nylon production. Which is developed to make clothes, car tires and rugs.
It is also used in the manufacture of plasticized products and lubricants. It is used in the production of polyester polyols for polyurethane systems.
In the food industry it is also applied as an aid in gelatinization, as an acidifier, buffer agent and leavening agent.
It is widely used in the paint and coatings industry.
The United States and Europe are the main producers of adipic acid.
The United States has three companies in four different locations representing 34% of world production. Europe has eight producers which together represent 38% of world production (CW 2007).