Preparing Deet Repellent

During the past many years, thousands of compounds and chemicals have been studied for their use as insect repellents. But it’s only the DEET repellents that have been used more extensively than any other. In this article we will throw light on preparing Deet repellent.

DEET is a compound which is a consequence of a reaction of m-toluic acid with thionyl chloride, which is then followed by a reaction with diethyl amine. It is a liquid, slightly yellow in color at room temperature. In order to prepare Deet repellent, one has to convert m-toluic acid to the corresponding acyl chloride, before reacting it with diethylamine.

For the Deet repellent preparation, in the lab, m-toluic acid is heated with thionyl chloride for 15 to 45 minutes to prepare the intermediate m-toluoyl chloride. The acid chloride is then processed up under Schotten-Baumann conditions to prepare Deet. Sometimes, these procedures yield a darkly colored product which is contaminated with an anhydride by-product. It has been shown that m-toluoyl chloride can be prepared at room temperature in 8 minutes. When manufacturing Deet repellent, the eventual DEET product is achieved in quality yield without the dark coloration or anhydride by-product.

This material is separated and distilled to purify it before supplying insect repellent manufacturers. It has been seen that mixing a range of repellent compounds often provide better results and superior efficiency than any one compound alone. When a batch of preparing Deet repellent gets over, a sample is sent to the quality control lab to test it to make sure that it meets the set standards for the product. Once passing these tests the p repellent is then pumped to the filling lines to make the end product.

In addition to the different components used for manufacturing Deet repellent, the packaging elements form an important part of the repellent. The can is generally a metal container, made up of tin-plate steel. The outside layer of tin keeps the steel from reacting with the ingredients used in the Deet repellent preparation.

Before preparing Deet repellent, the incoming raw materials are checked to make sure they meet the set standards for specifications. Certain tests such as pH, specific gravity, and moisture content are performed to ensure their quality. The cans are inspected for any dents, corrosion, and other defects. While manufacturing Deet repellent, samples are taken during different points and time to test the characteristics of the product.