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Benzene Book Final

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    Product and Technical Information

  • This brochure is intended to be an educational tool. It may be useful in an effort to increase awareness of the hazards ofbenzene and its general handling considerations. It is intended to be used by persons with skill, knowledge and trainingin the safe handling of hazardous chemicals, and the user has sole responsibilty to determine the suitability of benzenefor any particular use and in any manner.

    This brochure is not intended to provide in-depth training on specific handling techniques or emergency responseprocedures. It cannot be assumed that all acceptable safety measures are contained herein or that other additional measuresmay not be required under particular or exceptional conditions or circumstances. Please refer to material safety data sheets,which are available from Sunoco, Inc., to obtain additional information regarding the handling, use, and storage of benzene.

    This brochure references a number of statutes and regulations. However, it is not intended to identify all currentlyapplicable statutes and regulations. The reader is advised to consult the various applicable federal, state, and local statutesand regulations, and, if appropriate, legal counsel.

    Sunoco, Inc. supplies this information as a service to its customers. The information and recommendations containedherein have been compiled from sources believed to be reliable. The information is believed to be accurate at the timeof publication. However, Sunoco, Inc. does not make, and explicitly disclaims, any warranty, guarantee or representation,either expressed or implied, as to the accuracy or completeness of the information and recommendations contained herein.Sunoco, Inc. does not assume any liability of any kind whatsoever resulting from the use of or reliance upon any informa-tion contained in this brochure.

    Table Of Contents

    Introduction 1

    Typical Physical Properties 2

    Specifications For Benzene 3

    End Uses 4

    Handling Information 6

    Health Hazards & Toxicity Information 11

    First Aid 13

    Engineering Controls/Personal Protective Equipment 14

    Exposure Limits/Exposure Monitoring 15

    Fire Fighting 16

    Spill Control 16

    Pollution Prevention 18

    Waste Handling & Disposal 18

    Regulatory Issues 19

    Appendix Of Abbreviations 21

  • 1Introduction

    Benzene* is produced by Sunoco at refineries located in MarcusHook, PA, Westville, NJ, and Toledo, OH. The benzene is trans-ported by marine vessel from the Marcus Hook and Westvillerefineries and loaded and shipped via tank cars from the Toledorefinery. Sunoco also maintains inventory at a third-party terminalin Philadelphia where benzene can be loaded into trucks and shipped.

    Benzene is an organic chemical used to produce a wide varietyof chemical intermediates. The primary intermediates includestyrene, cumene, cyclohexane, and aniline.

    * Chemical Abstracts Registry Number 71-43-2

    October 2006 Sunoco Chemicals Benzene Stewardship Manual

  • 2Typical Physical Properties

    Structural Formula

    Empirical Formula C6H6

    Physical State Liquid

    Flammable Limits in Air (% by volume) Lower Limit 1.3% Upper Limit 7.5%

    Flash PointClosed Cup 12.0F (-11.1C)

    Auto-ignition Temperature 928.4F (498.0C)

    Boiling Point 176.2F (80.1C)

    Color Colorless

    Critical Pressure 710.4 psia48.3 atm

    Critical Temperature 552.2F (289.0C)

    Density at 68F (20C) 7.365 lb/gal0.879 g/mL

    Heat of Vaporization at 70F (21C) 187.8 BTU/lb

    Melting Point 41.9F (5.5C)

    Molecular Weight 78.11 g/mol

    Odor Sweet

    Reactivity Relatively unreactive

    SolubilityWater at 77F (25C) 1.79 g/L

    0.0149 lb/gal

    Specific Gravity (20C/4C) 0.879

    Specific Heat at 140F (60C) 0.42 BTU/ lbF0.42 cal/gC

    Threshold (odor) 2.7 - 12 PPM

    Vapor Density (Air = 1) 2.7

    Vapor Pressure at 77F (25C) 1.9 psia0.129 atm

    Viscosity (liquid) at 70F (21C) 4.24 x 10-4 lb/fts6.31 x 10-4 pas

    Viscosity (vapor) at 70F (21C) 5.02 x 10-6 lb/fts7.47 x 10-6 pas

    Volatility 100 wt%

    October 2006 Sunoco Chemicals Benzene Stewardship Manual

  • Typical Physical Properties Specifications For Benzene


    Specifications For Benzene

    Property Test Method Sales Specifications

    Composition D4492

    Benzene, wt % 99.80 Min

    Toluene, wt % 0.03 Max

    Non-Aromatics, wt % 0.15 Max

    1,4 Dioxane, wt PPM 10 Max

    Solidification Point, C D852 or Equiv. 5.35 Min

    Color, Pt-Co or APHA D1209 or Equiv. 20 Max

    Acid Wash Color D848 1 Max

    Appearance Visual Clear

    Total Sulfur, Wt. PPM D4045 or Equiv. 0.4 Max

    Thiophene, mg/kg Calculated 1 Max*

    Water, Wt. PPM D6304 or Equiv. Report

    Sunoco does not test for Thiophene. Chemically, Thiophene cannot be>1 ppm if Total Sulfur is

  • 4End Uses

    Benzene is used as a basic feedstock for producing numerous derivatives. The majorderivatives and uses are described briefly below.


    Styrene is the largest derivative of benzene. Styrene is produced by the alkylation ofbenzene with ethylene to form ethylbenzene, which is then dehydrogenated to makestyrene. Styrene is used primarily as a monomer to produce plastics such as polystyrene,styrene-butadiene rubber (SBR), acrylonitrile-butadiene-styrene (ABS) resins, andstyrene-butadiene latex.


    Cumene (isopropylbenzene) is produced by the alkylation of benzene with propylene.The main use of cumene is as a chemical intermediate for phenol and acetone production.

    Phenols major uses are for phenolic resins and bisphenol A production. Bisphenol Ais used as a monomer to produce polycarbonate and epoxy resins.

    A key acetone derivative is methyl methacrylate, a monomer used to manufactureacrylic resins.


    Cyclohexane is produced by the catalytic hydrogenation of benzene. The mainuse for cyclohexane is as a chemical intermediate for caprolactam and adipic acidproduction. A small amount of cyclohexane is used as paint remover and as a solventfor lacquers and resins.

    Caprolactam and adipic acid are used to manufacture nylon 6 and nylon 6,6, whichare polyamide polymers used for fibers, films, and engineering plastics.

    October 2006 Sunoco Chemicals Benzene Stewardship Manual

    H3C CH3CH


  • End Uses


    End Uses


    Aniline is produced by reacting benzene with a mixture of sulfuric acid andnitric acid to form nitrobenzene, which is hydrogenated in the presence of acatalyst to give aniline. Aniline is used mostly to produce methylene diphenyldiisocyanate (MDI) and poly methylene diphenyl diisocyanate (PMDI), whichare reacted with polyols to give polyurethanes for flexible foam production andadhesives. Other uses for aniline include rubber-processing chemicals, agriculturalchemicals, specialty fibers, and dyes.

    Other Uses

    Benzene is also used as an industrial solvent and a chemical intermediate inmany other processes. Other chemical products made from benzene includedetergent alkylates, chlorobenzene, maleic anhydride, and surfactants.


    October 2006 Sunoco Chemicals Benzene Stewardship Manual


  • 6Handling Information

    DOT Regulatory Shipping InformationBenzene is classified by the U.S. Department of Transportation (DOT) as a Class 3(flammable liquid) material. When shipping via all modes of transportation, shipmentsmust be documented, packaged, labeled, marked, placarded, loaded, and unloaded inaccordance with the applicable DOT Regulations.

    Title 49, Code of Federal Regulations contains the regulations for shipping hazardousmaterials via air, highway, rail, and water, except bulk water shipments, which are regulatedby Titles 33 and 46, Code of Federal Regulations.

    StorageBenzene freezes at 41.9F (5.5C). Vessels of ordinary carbon steel serve satisfactorilybecause benzene has no appreciable corrosive activity on mild steel at the temperaturesusually encountered in transportation and storage. Constant circulation through externalsteam-heat exchangers is the preferred method to keep benzene in a liquid state while instorage. However, due to the low flash point of 12F (-11.1C) and a boiling point of176.2F (80.1C), benzene should only be heated to a point that it remains in a liquid state.Typically this would be in the range of 60F (15C) - 80F (27 C), depending on theambient temperature. Storage tanks should consist of floating roofs or the vapor space abovethe liquid should have a nitrogen or inert gas pad.

    Storage in plastic containers is not recommended, as some plastics may leach benzene.In addition, benzene may cause some plastics to degrade. All lines that are isolated after anytransfer should be blown clear with nitrogen or an acceptable inert gas. All transfer linesshould be heat traced and insulated.

    Sampling Benzene In Shipping ContainersProper Personal Protective Equipment (PPE) should be worn when sampling benzene.

    Samples of benzene may be taken through the manway opening of a shipping container bymeans of a bottle placed in a stainless steel holder and suspended by a light stainless steelchain. Before taking a sample for testing, the bottle should be rinsed with the benzene tobe sampled, and quickly closed to minimize moisture pickup and other contamination.An ordinary three-gallon pail may be used to collect the sampling bottle, bottle holder andchain as they are withdrawn, dripping, from the tank.

    Transfers from Shipping Containers and Storage TanksBenzene can be transferred by pumping, by forcing via pressure from an inert gas, or bygravity. The product

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