There are currently no commercial uses of hexachlorobenzene in Australia. Hexachlorobenzene has been used as a pesticide but is no longer registered for this use in Australia. It was also used in the production of fireworks, ammunition, rubber, aluminium, and dyes, and in wood preservation. Hexachlorobenzene was widely used as a pesticide to protect the seeds of onions and sorghum, wheat, and other grains against fungus. Its relevance to the NPI is that it is formed as a by-product during the manufacture of chemicals used as solvents (to dissolve other substances), other chlorine-containing compounds, and pesticides. It is also formed as a by-product in the waste streams of chloralkali and wood-preserving plants, and when burning municipal waste.
Substance name: Benzene hexachloro - (HCB)
CASR number: 118-74-1
Molecular formula: C6Cl6 formula weight 284.78
Synonyms: The currently accepted name for this substance is hexachlorobenzene. Synonyms other than benzene hexachloro- include: perchlorobenzene; HCB; hexa c.b.; anticarie; bunt-cure; bunt-no-more; ceku C.B.; no bunt; pentachlorophenyl chloride; no bunt 40; julian's carbon chloride; no bunt 80; sanocide; smut-go; amatin; co-op hexa; granox nm; snieciotox
White needles. Very slightly soluble in water. Slightly soluble in cold alcohol, soluble in benzene, chloroform, ether, carbon disulfide, and boiling alcohol.
Melting Point: 230°C
Boiling Point: 332°C
Specific Gravity: 2.044
Vapour Density: 9.83
1 ppm = 11.6 mg/m3
Hexachlorobenzene has a very low chemical and biochemical reactivity, and this is reflected in its long persistence in the environment.
Combustible at high temperatures. The substance decomposes on heating, producing toxic fumes. Reacts violently with dimethyl formamide above 65°C.
The National Pollutant Inventory (NPI) holds data for all sources of benzene hexachloro emissions in Australia.
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