Benzene is a clear, colorless, highly flammable liquid with a kind of a sweet odor. It is an aromatic organic compound with the molecular formula C6H6. Benzene is available abundantly in nature. There is no need to make it synthetically as it is mostly a natural component in gas emissions in volcanic fires or forest fires and it is also found in gasoline, crude oil and cigarette smoke.
Popular Uses of Benzene
Moving on, Benzene has a lot of uses in different fields. Benzene is a widely used industrial chemical and is a major part of gasoline. Some of the other uses of Benzene include making plastics, synthetic fibers, rubber lubricants, dyes, resins, detergents, drugs and more. Some of the popular one are mentioned and discussed below.
- As a solvent
- As an Intermediate / Production of rubber
- As fuel
- Printing Industry
As a Solvent
Benzene is commonly used as a solvent in many industrial, commercial and research. Manufacturers use products which contain benzene as solvents in various production stages and it is used in manufacturing chemical and plastic products. Few examples include resins, synthetic products such as nylon, Styrofoam and others. Benzene is also used in the production of asphalt that is used by roofing and paving companies.
Benzene as an Intermediate
Benzene is also used in the production of tires and rubber and it is found in adhesives that are used to glue soles to shoes. Further chemical compounds that are manufactured using Benzene include detergents, pesticides insecticides, herbicides, and dyes.
If you didn’t know, Benzene is found in most products that is used in the printing industry. There are products that contain this chemical and are further used specially for cleaning printing equipments which also makes them last longer and functional. Additionally, ink and variety of painting products, such as spray paints, sealers, lacquers and stains also contain some portion of benzene. It keeps the paints in liquid form.
As a Fuel
Due to the its high octane number and natural availability, Benzene is used as a fuel by a lot of people and manufacturers. Some have used it as an gasoline additive to help burn fuel more efficiently.
However, the chemical also comes with health risks associated with exposure to benzene. It has both several effects like headache, instability, convulsions, unconsciousness and irritations. Depending on the exposure it can have both acute as well as chronic effects. And this can happen when Benzene is taken in through mouth or inhaled through air or absorbed by the skin. People are usually exposed to benzene when they fill their car with gasoline or while using household items that contain benzene or contaminated water.
These are some of the popular uses of Benzene and some facts related to the substance. To know more about properties, structure of benzene and Benzene formula you can keep visiting BYJU’s or download our app for interesting content and learning experience.