Ammonium acetate is a chemical compound with the formula NH4CH3COO (sometimes written as CH3COONH4).
Ammonium acetate decomposes at temperatures above 165 °C to yield acetamide:
- CH3COONH4 → CH3C(O)NH2 + H2O
If heated further, it will convert to acetonitrile (methyl cyanide).
Ammonium acetate is a white hygroscopic solid. Ammonium acetate is volatile at low pressures.
Ammonium acetate can be purchased online cheaply.
Ammonium acetate can be prepared by reacting acetic acid with ammonia, ammonium bicarbonate or carbonate. Drying the solution by boiling the excess water is difficult, as ammonium acetate will decompose. The best way to synthesize it is to bubble ammonia gas into anhydrous (glacial) acetic acid, causing the ammonium acetate to crystallize, though this is expensive.
Ammonium acetate is non-toxic, though if heated it can generate acetamide which is considered carcinogenic.
Should be stored in dry sealed containers, as it's hygroscopic.
Ammonium acetate is a harmless source of nitrogen to organic life and can be discarded without any special treatments.