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Carbon Tetrachloride (CCl4) is an important nonpolar covalent compound. The name is derived from the number of chlorine atoms in the molecule, which corresponds to the number of carbon atoms. As is common with nonpolar compounds, the oxidation state of the carbon atoms is +4 and that of the chlorine atoms is -Cl. Since the +4 oxidation state is very stable for carbon and silicon, CCl4 forms an almost solid substance.
CCl4 is used in synthesis of chlorofluorocarbons for use as heat transfer agents in refrigeration equipment and aerosol propellents. It is also used as a solvent for oils, fats, lacquers, pesticides, rubber, waxes and resins. Fumigation of grains and other substances is also a major source of CCl4 release into the environment. CCl4 is toxic to humans upon exposure and can cause irritation of the eyes, skin and respiratory tract. The toxicity of CCl4 is dependent on the duration and concentration of exposure, as well as individual metabolic differences.
The toxicity of CCl4 is attributed to its ability to induce the formation of free radicals in the body. These free radicals damage cellular structures and disrupt cellular energy processes. CCl4 is absorbed into the body through inhalation, ingestion and dermal absorption. CCl4 is rapidly metabolized in the liver to form the trichloromethyl free radical. This radical may bind to microsomal lipids, causing the breakdown of membrane structure and disruption of protein synthesis.
American Elements provides high purity carbon tetrachloride in a variety of forms including liquids, gels, films and nanopowders. All products are manufactured, tested and certified to the highest standards in the industry including Mil Spec (military grade), ACS, Reagent and Technical Grade, Food, Agricultural and Pharmaceutical Grade, EP/BP and USP and ISO/IEC 17025.