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The common name for Ethanoic acid (CH3CO2H) acid. It"s one of the simplest members of a series of organic acids called "fatty acids". In its pure state, it"s a clear liquid with a sharp smell, and solidifies to an icelike mass of crystals at 16.7 C - it"s sometimes called "glacial acetic acid" because of this. Vinegar is 3-6% acetic/ethanoic acid.