Benzene. Computer graphic of a molecule of benzene. The atoms are colour-coded: carbon (C) black and hydrogen (H) white. Benzene has the chemical formula C6.H6. Benzene is a thin, colourless liquid with a characteristic smell. It is highly inflammable and long-term exposure to it is thought to cause cancer. Benzene is obtained commercially from components (fractions) of petroleum using catalytic reforming. It is used to manufacture other chemicals and as a solvent for most simple organic chemicals.
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