ε-Caprolactone or simply caprolactone is a cyclic ester, a member of the lactone family, with a seven-membered ring with the formula (CH₂)₅CO₂. This colorless liquid is miscible with most organic solvents. It is produced on a very large scale as a precursor to caprolactam.
The great majority of caprolactone is consumed, often in situ, as a precursor to caprolactam. It is also a monomer used in the manufacture of highly specialised polymers.
Caprolactones, are integral in applications such as the production of support material for top-quality shoes, waterborne PUDs and modern orthopedic brace supports.The market for caprolactone - based technology is continuing to grow rapidly.