Definitions

from The American Heritage® Dictionary of the English Language, 5th Edition.

  • noun A colorless, flammable, toxic, liquid aromatic hydrocarbon, C6H6, derived from petroleum and used in or to manufacture a wide variety of chemical products, including DDT, detergents, insecticides, and motor fuels.

from The Century Dictionary.

  • noun A hydrocarbon (C6H6) formed whenever organic bodies are subjected to destructive distillation at a high temperature, and obtained commercially from coal-tar.
  • noun Same as benzin or benzine.

from the GNU version of the Collaborative International Dictionary of English.

  • noun (Chem.) A volatile, very inflammable liquid, C6H6, contained in the naphtha produced by the destructive distillation of coal, from which it is separated by fractional distillation. The name is sometimes applied also to the impure commercial product or benzole, and also, but rarely, to a similar mixed product of petroleum.
  • noun (Chem.) a closed chain or ring, consisting of six carbon atoms, each with one hydrogen atom attached, regarded as the type from which the aromatic compounds are derived. This ring formula is provisionally accepted as representing the probable constitution of the benzene molecule, C6H6, and as the type on which its derivatives are formed.

from Wiktionary, Creative Commons Attribution/Share-Alike License.

  • noun organic chemistry An aromatic hydrocarbon of formula C6H6 whose structure consists of a ring of alternate single and double bonds.
  • noun organic chemistry, in combination Sometimes used in place of the phenyl group

from WordNet 3.0 Copyright 2006 by Princeton University. All rights reserved.

  • noun a colorless liquid hydrocarbon; highly inflammable; carcinogenic; the simplest of the aromatic compounds

Etymologies

from Wiktionary, Creative Commons Attribution/Share-Alike License

A technical term in chemistry, adopted in English in 1835 as benzine (benzene from 1872), from German Benzin, which was coined in 1833 by Eilhardt Mitscherlich based on Benzoesäure "benzoic acid", plus the technical ending -ene (German -in) denoting hydrocarbons. benzoic in turn is an adjective formed from benzoin, originally a term for a balsamic resin.

Examples

  • In addition to greenhouse gas reductions, the report looked at new regulations to reduce the release of toxic and carcinogenic emissions such as benzene, which is released from gas pumps and acrylonitrile, which is used to manufacture synthetic rubber.

    CBC | Top Stories News

  • This type of chromosomal damage has been associated with increased cancer risk and has been reported previously in other workers exposed to benzene, which is a constituent of oil.

    Gina Solomon: Years After Oil Spill, Report Finds Increase in Respiratory Problems & Cancer Risk in Workers

  • Naphtha produced from steam cracking contains benzene, which is extracted prior to hydrotreating.

    Cracking

  • A ship like the one that you have described that is full of benzene, which is very flammable and volatile, we often have ships, chemical tankers that carry some very deadly chemicals.

    CNN Transcript Nov 3, 2007

  • A ship like the one that you have described that is full of benzene, which is very flammable and volatile, we often have ships, chemical tankers that carry some very deadly chemicals.

    CNN Transcript Nov 4, 2007

  • Complicating matters here, the hijacked boat is carrying the chemical benzene, which is highly flammable.

    CNN Transcript Oct 29, 2007

  • S. O'BRIEN: S.ill to come this morning, the soft drinks that your family enjoys, do they have something called benzene?

    CNN Transcript Apr 12, 2006

  • Both Harbin and Khabarovsk are downstream from the Chinese province of (ph) where an explosion at a chemical factory 11 days dumped large amounts of benzene, which is an industrial solvent used in gasoline, into the river.

    CNN Transcript Nov 24, 2005

  • Some of the liquid hydrocarbons formed at the same time are not limpid fluids like benzene, which is less viscous than water, but are thick oily substances, or even tars.

    Acetylene, the Principles of Its Generation and Use

  • But methylene iodide further possesses the valuable property of mixing easily with benzene, which is a very light liquid.

    Scientific American Supplement, No. 1082, September 26, 1896

Comments

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  • fanzine for chemists

    January 12, 2009

  • Usage note in comment on naphtha.

    October 4, 2017