1,1,1-Trichloroethane

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1,1,1-Trichloroethane is a chlorinated hydrocarbon that has been widely used as an industrial solvent. It is a colorless, sweet-smelling liquid that does not burn easily.

History[edit | edit source]

1,1,1-Trichloroethane was first reported by Henri Victor Regnault in 1840. It was used extensively in the 20th century as a cleaner for electronic equipment, but its production has been phased out in most of the world due to environmental concerns.

Production[edit | edit source]

1,1,1-Trichloroethane is produced by the chlorination of ethylene. The process involves the reaction of chlorine with ethylene in the presence of a catalyst, typically iron(III) chloride.

Uses[edit | edit source]

1,1,1-Trichloroethane has been used as a solvent for cleaning metal parts and electronic equipment. It is also used as a refrigerant, a blowing agent for foam packaging, and a carrier solvent for herbicides. In the past, it was used as an anesthetic.

Health effects[edit | edit source]

Exposure to 1,1,1-Trichloroethane can cause dizziness, confusion, and loss of coordination. Long-term exposure can lead to damage to the liver, kidneys, and nervous system. It is also a suspected human carcinogen.

Environmental impact[edit | edit source]

1,1,1-Trichloroethane is a potent ozone depleting substance. It is also a significant greenhouse gas, with a global warming potential over 1000 times that of carbon dioxide.

Regulation[edit | edit source]

Due to its environmental impact, the production of 1,1,1-Trichloroethane has been phased out in most of the world under the Montreal Protocol. In the United States, it is regulated under the Clean Air Act.

See also[edit | edit source]

1,1,1-Trichloroethane Resources
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Contributors: Prab R. Tumpati, MD