A colorless liquid with characteristic odor and taste,
commonly called grain alcohol or simply alcohol. Ordinary
ethanol is about 95% pure, the remaining 5% being
water, which can only be removed with difficulty to
give pure or absolute ethanol.
Ethanol is the alcohol
in beer, wine, or liquor and can be made by the fragmentation
of sugar or starch. Denatured alcohol, for industrial
use, is ethanol with toxic additives.
Ethanol is used
as a solvent in the manufacture of varnishes and perfumes;
as a preservative; in medicines; as a disinfectant;
and as a fuel; Ethanol is a soporific; if its presence
in the blood exceeds about 5% death usually occurs.
Behavioral changes, impairment of vision, or unconsciousness
occur at lower temperature.