Springer Nature is making SARS-CoV-2 and COVID-19 research free. View research | View latest news | Sign up for updates

Atmospheric chemistry of HFE-7000 (CF3CF2CF2OCH3) and 2,2,3,3,4,4,4-heptafluoro-1-butanol (CF3CF2CF2CH2OH): kinetic rate coefficients and temperature dependence of reactions with chlorine atoms

  • 681 Accesses

  • 20 Citations


Background, aim, and scope

The adverse environmental impacts of chlorinated hydrocarbons on the Earth’s ozone layer have focused attention on the effort to replace these compounds by nonchlorinated substitutes with environmental acceptability. Hydrofluoroethers (HFEs) and fluorinated alcohols are currently being introduced in many applications for this purpose. Nevertheless, the presence of a great number of C–F bonds drives to atmospheric long-lived compounds with infrared absorption features. Thus, it is necessary to improve our knowledge about lifetimes and global warming potentials (GWP) for these compounds in order to get a complete evaluation of their environmental impact. Tropospheric degradation is expected to be initiated mainly by OH reactions in the gas phase. Nevertheless, Cl atoms reaction may also be important since rate constants are generally larger than those of OH. In the present work, we report the results obtained in the study of the reactions of Cl radicals with HFE-7000 (CF3CF2CF2OCH3) (1) and its isomer CF3CF2CF2CH2OH (2).

Materials and methods

Kinetic rate coefficients with Cl atoms have been measured using the discharge flow tube–mass spectrometric technique at 1 Torr of total pressure. The reactions of these chlorofluorocarbons (CFCs) substitutes have been studied under pseudo-first-order kinetic conditions in excess of the fluorinated compounds over Cl atoms. The temperature ranges were 266–333 and 298–353 K for reactions of HFE-7000 and CF3CF2CF2CH2OH, respectively.


The measured room temperature rate constants were k(Cl+CF3CF2CF2OCH3) = (1.24 ± 0.28) × 10−13 cm3 molecule−1 s−1and k(Cl+CF3CF2CF2CH2OH) = (8.35 ± 1.63) × 10−13 cm3 molecule−1 s−1 (errors are 2σ + 10% to cover systematic errors). The Arrhenius expression for reaction 1 was k 1(266–333 K) = (6.1 ± 3.8) × 10−13exp[−(445 ± 186)/T] cm3 molecule−1 s−1 and k 2(298–353 K) = (1.9 ± 0.7) × 10−12exp[−(244 ± 125)/T] cm3 molecule−1 s−1 (errors are 2σ). The reactions are reported to proceed through the abstraction of an H atom to form HCl and the corresponding halo-alkyl radical. At 298 K and 1 Torr, yields on HCl of 0.95 ± 0.38 and 0.97 ± 0.16 (errors are 2σ) were obtained for CF3CF2CF2OCH3 and CF3CF2CF2CH2OH, respectively.


The obtained kinetic rate constants are related to the previous data in the literature, showing a good agreement taking into account the error limits. Comparing the obtained results at room temperature, k 1 and k 2, HFE-7000 is significantly less reactive than its isomer C3F7CH2OH. A similar behavior has been reported for the reactions of other fluorinated alcohols and their isomeric fluorinated ethers with Cl atoms. Literature data, together with the results reported in this work, show that, for both fluorinated ethers and alcohols, the kinetic rate constant may be considered as not dependent on the number of –CF2– in the perfluorinated chain. This result may be useful since it is possible to obtain the required physicochemical properties for a given application by changing the number of –CF2– without changes in the atmospheric reactivity. Furthermore, lifetimes estimations for these CFCs substitutes are calculated and discussed. The average estimated Cl lifetimes are 256 and 38 years for HFE-7000 and C3H7CH2OH, respectively.


The studied CFCs’ substitutes are relatively short-lived and OH reaction constitutes their main reactive sink. The average contribution of Cl reactions to global lifetime is about 2% in both cases. Nevertheless, under local conditions as in the marine boundary layer, τ Cl values as low as 2.5 and 0.4 years for HFE-7000 and C3H7CH2OH, respectively, are expected, showing that the contribution of Cl to the atmospheric degradation of these CFCs substitutes under such conditions may constitute a relevant sink. In the case of CF3CF2CF2OCH3, significant activation energy has been measured, thus the use of kinetic rate coefficient only at room temperature would result in underestimations of lifetimes and GWPs.

Recommendations and perspectives

The results obtained in this work may be helpful within the database used in the modeling studies of coastal areas. The knowledge of the atmospheric behavior and the structure–reactivity relationship discussed in this work may also contribute to the development of new environmentally acceptable chemicals. New volatile materials susceptible of emission to the troposphere should be subject to the study of their reactions with OH and Cl in the range of temperature of the troposphere. The knowledge of the temperature dependence of the kinetic rate constants, as it is now reported for the case of reactions 1 and 2, will allow more accurate lifetimes and related magnitudes like GWPs. Nevertheless, a better knowledge of the vertical Cl tropospheric distribution is still required.

This is a preview of subscription content, log in to check access.

Fig. 1
Fig. 2
Fig. 3
Fig. 4
Fig. 5


  1. Aranda A, Díaz-de-Mera Y, Rodríguez D, Salgado S, Martínez E (2002) Kinetic and products of the BrO+CH3SH reaction: temperature and pressure dependence. Chem Phys Lett 357:471–476

  2. Aranda A, Díaz-de-Mera Y, Rodríguez A, Rodríguez D, Martínez E (2003) A kinetic and mechanistic study of the reaction of Cl atoms with acrolein: temperature dependence for abstraction channel. J Phys Chem A 107:5717–5721

  3. Aranda A, Díaz-de-Mera Y, Bravo I, Rodríguez D, Rodríguez A, Martínez, E (2006) Atmospheric HFEs degradation in the gas-phase: reactions of HFE-7100 and HFE-7200 with Cl atoms at low temperatures. Environ Sci Technol 40:5971–5976

  4. Aranda A, Díaz-de-Mera Y, Bravo I, Morales L (2007) Cyclooctane tropospheric degradation initiated by reaction with Cl atoms. Environ Sci Pollut Res Int 14(3):176–181

  5. Atkinson R, Cox RA, Crowley JN, Hampson Jr RF, Hynes RG, Jenkin ME, Kerr JA, Rossi MJ, Troe J (2006) Summary of evaluated kinetic and photochemical data for atmospheric chemistry. IUPAC Subcommittee on Gas Kinetic Data Evaluation for Atmospheric Chemistry. Available at http://www.iupackinetic.ch.cam.ac.uk/summary/IUPACsumm_web_latest.pdf

  6. Bedjanian Y, Laverdet G, Le Bras G (1998) Low-pressure study of the reaction of Cl atoms with isoprene. J Phys Chem A 102:953–959

  7. Christensen LK, Wallington TJ, Guschin A, Hurley MD (1999) Atmospheric degradation mechanism of CF3OCH3. J Phys Chem A 103:4202–4208

  8. Gilliland ER, Sherwood TK (1934) Diffusion of vapors into air streams. Ind Eng Chem 26:516–523

  9. Harnisch J, de Jager D, Gale J, Stobbe O (2002) Halogenated compounds and climate change: future emission levels and reductions costs. Environ Sci Pollut Res Int 9(6):369–374

  10. Harnisch J, Höhne N (2002) Comparison of emissions estimates derived from atmospheric measurements with national estimates of HFCs, PFCs and SF6. Environ Sci Pollut Res Int 9(5):315–320

  11. Hurley MD, Wallington TJ, Andersen MPS, Ellis DA, Martin JW, Mabury SA (2004) Atmospheric chemistry of fluorinated alcohols: reaction with Cl atoms and OH radicals an atmospheric lifetimes. J Phys Chem A 108:1973–1979

  12. Kaufman F (1984) Kinetics of elementary radical reactions on the gas phase. J Phys Chem 88:4909–4917

  13. Kelly T, Sidebottom H (2002) A kinetic and mechanistic study of the atmospheric oxidation of 3,3,3-triflouropropanol. Poster CMD-2. Presented at the Eurotrac 2 Symposium, Garmisch-Partenkirchen, March. Available at http://imk-aida.fzk.de/CMD/AR2001/GPP18_4.pdf

  14. Kondratyev KY, Varotsos CA (1995a) Atmospheric greenhouse-effect in the context of global climate-change. Nuovo Cimento Soc Ital Fis C 18:123–151

  15. Kondratyev KY, Varotsos CA (1995b) Atmospheric ozone variability in context of global change. Int J Remote Sens 16:1851–1881

  16. Kurylo MJ, Orkin VL (2003) Determination of atmospheric lifetimes via the measurement of OH radical kinetics. Chem Rev 103:5049–5076

  17. Martínez E, Aranda A, Díaz-de-Mera Y, Rodríguez D, López MR, Albaladejo J (2002) Atmopheric degradation in the gas-phase: Cl–DMSO reaction. Temperature dependence and products. Environ Sci Technol 36:1226–1230

  18. Molina MJ, Rowland FS (1974) Stratospheric sink for chlorofluoromethanes: chlorine atomic-catalysed destruction of ozone. Nature 249:810–812

  19. Ninomiya Y, Kawasaki M, Guschin A, Molina LT, Molina MJ, Wallington TJ (2000) Atmospheric chemistry of n-C3F7OCH3: reaction with OH radicals and Cl atoms and atmospheric fate of n-C3F7OCH2O(×) radicals. Environ Sci Technol 34:2973–2978

  20. Nohara K, Toma M, Kutsuna S, Takeuchi K, Ibusuki T (2001) Cl atom-initiated oxidation of three homologous methyl perfloroalkyl ethers. Environ Sci Technol 35:114–120

  21. Papadimitriou VC, Prosmitis AV, Lazarou YG, Papagiannakopoulos P (2003) Absolute reaction rates of chlorine atoms with CF3CH2OH, CHF2CH2OH, and CH2FCH2OH. J Phys Chem A 107:3733–3740

  22. Park JY, Slagle IR, Gutman D (1983) Kinetics of the reaction of chlorine atoms with vinyl bromide and its use for measuring chlorine-atom concentrations. J Phys Chem 87:1812–1818

  23. Rajakumar B, Burkholder JB, Portmann RW, Ravishankara AR (2005) Rate coefficients for the OH+CFH2CH2OH reaction between 238 and 355 K. Phys Chem Chem Phys 7:2498–2505

  24. Sellevåg SR, Nielsen CJ, Søvde OA, Myhre G, Sundet JK, Stordal F, Isaksen ISA (2004) Atmospheric gas-phase degradation and global warming potentials of 2-floroethanol, 2,2-difluoroethanol, and 2,2,2-trifluoroethanol. Atmos Environ 38:6725–6735

  25. Singh HB, Thakur AN, Chen YE, Kanakidou M (1996) Tetrachloroethylene as an indicator of low Cl atom concentration in the troposphere. Geophys Res Lett 23:1529–1532

  26. Spicer CW, Chapman EG, Finlayson-Pitts BJ, Plastridge RA, Hubbe JM, Fast JD, Berkowitz CM (1998) Unexpectedly high concentrations of molecular chlorine in coastal air. Nature 394:353–356

  27. Taatjes CA, Christensen LK, Hurley MD, Wallington TJ (1999) Absolute and site-specific abstraction rate coefficients for reactions of Cl with CH3CH2OH, CH3CD2OH, and CD3CH2OH between 295 and 600 K. J Phys Chem A 103:9805–9814

  28. Tokuhashi K, Takahashi A, Kaise M, Kondo S, Sekiya A, Yamashita S, Ito H (1999) Rate constants for the reactions of OH radicals with CH3OCF2CF3, CH3OCF2CF2CF3, and CH3OCF(CF3)2. Int J Chem Kinet 31:846–853

Download references


We thank the Spanish Ministry of Science–Education and the Castilla-La Mancha Science–Education Council for their financial support. We thank Luis Tello (3M Corp.) for supplying samples of HFE-7000.

Author information

Correspondence to Yolanda Díaz-de-Mera.

Additional information

Responsible editor: Constantini Samara

Rights and permissions

Reprints and Permissions

About this article

Cite this article

Díaz-de-Mera, Y., Aranda, A., Bravo, I. et al. Atmospheric chemistry of HFE-7000 (CF3CF2CF2OCH3) and 2,2,3,3,4,4,4-heptafluoro-1-butanol (CF3CF2CF2CH2OH): kinetic rate coefficients and temperature dependence of reactions with chlorine atoms. Environ Sci Pollut Res 15, 584 (2008). https://doi.org/10.1007/s11356-008-0030-3

Download citation


  • CFCs substitutes
  • Chlorine
  • Gas phase
  • Reactivity
  • Temperature
  • Troposphere