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Physical characteristics Key technical properties Value/unit Main applications
Evaporation rate: Medium Purity min 99.5% m/m Paints & Coatings
Solvency Power:  High Water content 0.03% m/m Adhesives & Sealants
Impurities:  Low Acidity 0.001% m/m Inks
Odour:  Mild Boiling point 116°C Pharmaceuticals
- Flash point 15°C Extraction processes
- - - Rubber chemicals
- - - Cleaning

Product overview

Ketones are strong polar solvents thanks to their carbonyl functional group. Their high solvency and excellent stability make them a solvent of choice for coatings, adhesives, inks and cleaning applications.

MIBK is a ‘true’ or active solvent due to its compatibility with a variety of organic components and its ability to dissolve them on its own without the need for an alcohol, which can help to simplify system formulations. It also has the ability to combine with lower-cost hydrocarbon solvents in solvent blends.

MIBK is a colourless liquid with a stable chemical nature and a medium boiling range. It is able to dissolve cellulose esters, vinyl polymers and copolymers, and most natural and synthetic resins and is also partially miscible in water.

Its relatively low density combined with strong solvency assists coatings formulators in producing high-quality, high-solids formulations that are also able to comply with VOC regulations.  

Because of its high solvent strength, less solvent is required to dissolve a resin and in applications where the solvent evaporates to the atmosphere during use, lower levels of VOC emissions are produced.

Download the Ketones brochure

Technical DatasheetAsia-Pacific Europe/Africa Americas Asia-Pacific
Methyl Isobutyl Ketone (MIBK) Datasheet N/A Datasheet

How to buy from us

Shell Chemicals can supply a broad range of bulk hydrocarbon and chemical solvents to industrial customers. To make an initial enquiry, please complete this contact us to buy form.

Before you do, please read the following essential information on doing business with us:


Safety is our number one priority. As well as providing customers with information on the safe and environmentally responsible use of our products, we are committed to ensuring that risks to the safety of our staff and our contractors are reduced to the lowest reasonably practicable level. We therefore require assurance from customers that appropriate safety standards for unloading and storage are met before we make deliveries (see the HSSE addenda in our general Terms & Conditions of Sale below). Our HSSE specialists can provide guidance on these standards.


Delivery modes

Customers can order and have the product delivered by Shell or collect the product themselves from one of our manufacturing facilities. Available modes of delivery include truck, rail, or inter-modal (separate conditions apply).

In case of customer collections, the Shell site minimum requirements apply. For collection by barge or tanker special safety/vetting standards and requirements apply.

Minimum order size

Deliveries by road should involve fully loaded trucks of minimum 22 tonnes made up of one product. If you collect the product from our site the minimum order size is 18 tonnes.


Shell’s standard payment method is Direct Debit 30 days from invoice.

Delivery documentation

The following documents are provided with each delivery:

  • Bill of Lading, CMR Waybill or other relevant transport document
  • Certificate of Analysis or Conformity (if required)
  • HSSE-related documentation in line with regulations
  • Customs documentation in line with regulations (if required)

Please also see:

“Product descriptions are for information purposes only. Products sold by Shell Chemicals companies shall comply with specifications included in the relevant sales contract. Shell Chemicals make no other warranty or representation of any kind concerning the products sold, whether of their merchantability and fitness for any particular purpose or otherwise, and none shall be implied.”


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