Cocamide Diethanolamine

Cocamide DEA or cocamide diethanolamine, is a diethanolamide made by reacting the mixture of fatty acids from coconut oils with diethanolamine. It is a viscous liquid used as a foaming agent in bath product like shampoos and hand soaps, and in cosmetics as an emulsifying agent.

Cocamide is a mixture of amides of the fatty acids obtained from coconut oil. As coconut oil contains about 50% of lauric acid, in formulas only the 12-carbon chains tend to be considered. Cocamide is the structural basis of many surfactants. Common are ethanolamines (cocamide MEA, cocamide DEA), or betaine compounds (cocamidopropyl betaine).

Diethanolamine, often abbreviated as DEA, is an organic compound. This colorless liquid is polyfunctional, being a secondary amine and a diol. Like other organic amines, diethanolamine acts as a weak base. Reflecting the hydrophilic character of the alcohol groups, DEA is soluble in water, and is even hygroscopic. Amides prepared from DEA are often also hydrophilic.

DEA is used as a surfactant and a corrosion inhibitor. It is used to remove hydrogen sulfide and carbon dioxide from natural gas.

In oil refineries, a DEA in water solution is commonly used to remove hydrogen sulfide from various process gases. It has an advantage over a similar amine ethanolamine in that a higher concentration may be used for the same corrosion potential. This allows refiners to scrub hydrogen sulfide at a lower circulating amine rate with less overall energy usage.

DEA is a versatile chemical intermediate, principal derivatives include ethylenemine and ethylenediamine. Dehydration of DEA with sulfuric acid gives morpholine. Amides derived from DEA and fatty acids, known as diethanolamides, are amphiphilic. Diethanolmides are common ingredients in cosmetics and shampoos added to confer a creamy teccture and foaming action. Relevant derivatives of DEA include lauramide diethanolamine and cocamide diethanolamine.


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