An aromatic crystalline compound with a sweet smell. Camphor is obtained from the steam distillation of the leaves and wood of the camphor laurel tree, Cinnamomum camphora, native to southeast Asia. It forms a white waxy solid when purified by steam distillation and sublimation. Since the 1930s camphor has also been made synthetically. Camphor has been used as an insect repellent and as a vapor phase corrosion inhibitor for metals. It was also used in Celluloid as a plasticizer for cellulose nitrate. Camphor sublimes slowly as room temperature; once vaporized it can react with and soften many plastics.
Synonyms and Related Terms
gum camphor; camphre (Fr.); 2-camphanone; 2-bornanone; Japan camphor; Formosa camphor; laurel camphor; synthetic camphor; Campher (Deut.); Kampfer(Deut.); camphre (Fr.); kamfer (Ned., Sven.); kamfora (Pol.); (Port.);
Rhombohedral crystals. Sublimes at room temperature. Soluble in ethanol, ether, chloroform, aniline, nitrobenzene, carbon disulfide, decalin, ligroin. Slightly soluble in water (0.12 g in 100 ml).
|Molecular Weight||mol. wt. = 152.23|
Hazards and Safety
Combustible. Flash point = 64C
Contact may cause irritation or burns. Ingestion can cause nausea, vomiting, vertigo, convulsions and death.
Fisher Scientific: MSDS
Sources Checked for Data in Record
- Van Nostrand's Scientific Encyclopedia, Douglas M. Considine (ed.), Van Nostrand Reinhold, New York, 1976
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- MSDS Sheet Comment: Fisher Scientific 8/02/02: mp = 175-177 C, flash point = 64C
- Richard S. Lewis, Hawley's Condensed Chemical Dictionary, Van Nostrand Reinhold, New York, 10th ed., 1993
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