All You Need To Know About Isopropyl Alcohol

Isopropyl alcohol is a component in lots of important cleaning products — medical swabs, cleanroom wipes, disinfectant solutions, detergents, and so much more. It’s even an effective product all by itself, sold in sprayers and gallon jugs in grocery and hardware stores, not to mention at specialist suppliers.

You can also buy high quality isopropyl alcohol in bulk via Have you ever considered how isopropyl alcohol is made, or how many uses it actually has? If so, then this blog is for you! Read on to learn everything you need to know about this essential chemical compound.

What’s In A Name?

We may be used to calling it isopropyl alcohol, but it goes by other names too: IPA, sec-propyl alcohol, 2-propanal, and isopropanol. Anytime you see these terms in a list of ingredients for a particular item, you’ll know that it has isopropyl alcohol in it.

When Was It Discovered?

Although it may very, very rarely appear in nature under the right conditions, isopropyl alcohol is almost exclusively manmade. First produced in 1920, it was manufactured by Standard Oil for use as an oxidation catalyst in acetone. During World War II, IPA and acetone were used in mass quantities in the production of cordite, a smokeless propellant it wasn’t until later years that IPA was found to be effective as a sanitizing and anesthetizing agent when it was mixed with water.