Gamma Butyrolactone, γ-Butyrolactone (GBL) is a hygroscopic colourless, water-miscible liquid with a weak characteristic odour. It is the simplest 4-carbon lactone. Gamma Butyrolactone has a wide range of applications, including as a solvent in chemical reactions, as a cleaning agent, as a paint stripper, and as a precursor in the production of other chemicals. GBL is also known to be a precursor to the production of gamma-hydroxybutyric acid (GHB), a central nervous system depressant that has been used recreationally for its euphoric and sedative effects. Due to its potential for abuse and misuse, GBL is regulated in many countries.

Photo of Gamma Butyrolactone
CAS Number: 96-48-0
UN Number: None
Hazard Class: None
Packing Group: None
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Physical properties of Gamma Butyrolactone

Physical State: No information available
Appearance: Clear
Odor: Mild
Odor Threshold: No information available
pH: 4.5
Melting Point / Range: 44 to -42 °C
Boiling Point / Range: 204.6 °C
Molecular Formula: No information available
Molecular Weight: No information available
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Safety Information

You can access comprehensive safety details for Gamma Butyrolactone in our MSDS (material safety data sheet) provided below. This resource covers essential information regarding first aid, inadvertent spills, fire response, handling and storage guidelines, personal protective measures, and additional details. Prioritise acquainting yourself with potential hazards associated with its handling.

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Gamma-butyrolactone (GBL) presents several hazards associated with its handling and use. Some of the key hazards include:

Health Hazards: GBL can cause irritation to the skin, eyes, and respiratory system upon contact or inhalation. Prolonged exposure may lead to more severe health effects, including dizziness, headaches, nausea, and in extreme cases, unconsciousness or coma.

Flammability: GBL is flammable and may ignite if exposed to heat, sparks, or open flames. Fire or combustion can produce hazardous by-products and may lead to thermal decomposition.

Chemical Reactivity: GBL can react with oxidising agents, acids, and alkalis, potentially leading to hazardous chemical reactions. It is important to store and handle GBL properly to avoid accidental reactions and exposure to incompatible substances.

Environmental Hazards: Improper disposal of GBL can lead to environmental contamination. It may be harmful to aquatic life and ecosystems if released into waterways or soil.

Toxicity: GBL is a precursor to gamma-hydroxybutyric acid (GHB), a central nervous system depressant. While GBL itself has limited toxicity, its conversion to GHB in the body can pose significant health risks, including overdose and potential addiction.

It is essential to handle GBL with caution, follow safety protocols, and adhere to proper storage and disposal practices to mitigate potential hazards and ensure safety in the workplace and the environment.