Understanding the chemicals that you’re considering to purchase is vital, both for achieving satisfactory results and for your safety. Thankfully, cyclohexane is a chemical that is easy to identify by scent and relatively safe to handle when proper procedure is followed.
Structure and Properties of Cyclohexane
Cyclohexane is a liquid chemical molecularly comprised of 6 carbon and 12 hydrogen atoms. It has three single pairs of carbon-to-carbon bonds formed in a ring, with two hydrogen atoms bonded to each carbon atom.
This structure makes cyclohexane what chemists call a cycloalkane, which is defined as being:
- Structurally situated in a single ring.
- Resists “addition” reactions (i.e., less reactive substance)
- Molecular structure of only hydrogen and carbon
It is a nonpolar, flammable, and clear chemical. It is easy to identify due to its detergent-like scent being very distinct.
Because it’s a cycloalkane, there is less concern about reactivity. However, never bring it near an open flame and ensure you’re wearing proper protective personal equipment to adequately protect yourself from health risks associated with the vapor.
Cyclohexane is primarily used to manufacture nylon, but it also functions in the oil extraction process.
In the plant-oil extraction process, a solvent is applied to plant material after it has been cleaned, crushed, heated, and pressed. Using a chemical solvent to separate oil from the material ensures that none of the plant oil goes to waste.
Sometimes, cyclohexane is used after the first round of oil extraction to remove the remaining oil from the pulp. However, it can be challenging to remove with a methanol rinse, so we recommend finding an alternative method.
Need to stock up on solvents?
If your company needs a bulk solvent supply, Extraction Grade Solvents is the site for you! It’s easy to order our products online, and you don’t even have to leave you your desk (or couch). We sell edible oil solvents in 5-gallon and 55-gallon pails delivered straight to your facilities.
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