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- C&EN | White Paper

January 2022

When medicinal chemists need to add hydrogen to a drug compound, they reach for a glass pressure reactor. When petrochemical scientists need a reactor to accommodate mechanical stirring at 100 °C, they reach for a glass pressure reactor. Some scientists rely on stainless steel reactors not realizing that glassware can often do the same job—whether that job is hydrogenation, polymerization, crystallization, synthesis, or another process that benefits from pressure reactors. Glass can handle up to 45 pounds per square inch in gauge (psig) while allowing researchers to keep an eye on a reaction, and at lower cost than stainless steel.

Pressure reactors are essential lab equipment, and knowing when to use a glass reactor rather than a stainless steel one is an important choice. The decision requires consideration of a number of factors, including the scale of the reaction, how much pressure is required, and the reactivity of the reagents.


Pressure vessels are closed containers designed to hold liquids or gases at pressures that are substantially higher or lower than the ambient pressure. Many important molecules, including certain medications, are made using pressure vessels...

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About Ace Glass Incorporated
Founded 1936 in Vineland, NJ, Ace Glass Incorporated is a leader and innovator of scientific glassware, lab equipment and glass apparatus. The firm's innovations and inventions include the first American made spherical joints and sintered-glass fritted disks. Ace also designed and patented the first internally threaded glassware — Ace Threds® — plus Ace Trubore® Precision Bore Tubing, and their unique Instatherm® oil baths. Ace Glass continues its strong tradition today, meeting the laboratory glassware needs of satisfied customers worldwide.

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