White spirit is a flammable, clear, colorless liquid. It is a mixture of chemicals known as petroleum hydrocarbons. Other common names for white spirit are Stoddard solvent, mineral turpentine, turpentine substitute, petroleum spirits and paint thinner.
White spirit is a mixture of aliphatic and alicyclic C7 to C12 hydrocarbons with a typical maximum content of 25% of C7- C12 alkyl aromatic
The various types of white spirit are produced as distillation fractions from kerosene. The white spirit type 1 (the traditional white spirit) with a content of up to 25% of aromatics and white spirit type 2 (low aromatic white spirit) with a content of up to 17% of aromatics is produced from straight-run naphtha and/or straight-run kerosene, which are refinery process streams obtained from the distillation of kerosene fraction. These fractions are subjected to fractional distillation into the appropriate boiling ranges of white spirit. A hydrodesulphurization process (removal of sulphur) is carried out either before or after the fractional distillation.
Uses of white spirit
White spirit is the most widely solvent for pain, coatings, waxes, varnishes, adhesives, printing inks and liquid photocopier toners. In industry it is also used as an extraction solvent, as a cleaning solvent, as a degreasing solvent and as a solvent in aerosols, paints, wood preservatives, lacquers, varnishes and asphalt products. In households, white spirit is commonly used to clean paint brushes.