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Write a short note on the following: BHC.

Last updated date: 22nd Jul 2024
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Hint: BHC stands for benzene hexachloride. It contains carbon, hydrogen, and chlorine. It is obtained from benzene. It has a ring containing six carbon atoms.

Complete step by step answer:
- BHC or Benzene hexachloride or 1,2,3,4,5,6-hexachlorocyclohexane is a compound obtained from benzene. In the ring structure, each carbon atom is joined to one hydrogen atom and one chlorine atom. Only single bonds are present in this molecule.
- It can be obtained by the addition of chloride of benzene in presence of light. For this reaction to occur, oxygen and substitutional catalysts should be absent.
- The chemical formula of BHC is $C_{6}H_{{}6}Cl_{6}$. It has six carbon atoms, six hydrogen atoms, and six chloride atoms.
- It is colorless and has a musty odor. It is used as an agricultural insecticide. It is used as a pharmaceutical treatment for scabies and lice.
- It is known to be carcinogenic to humans. It causes skin irritation. If swallowed, inhaled, or absorbed through the skin, it can be fatal.
- It is a nervous stimulant and causes violent convulsions.
- Lindane is one of the stereoisomers of BHC. It is an insecticide. It is used to prevent crops from insects. Although, it has some side effects like stinging or redness of the skin.

Note: BHC is called benzene hexachloride or 1,2,3,4,5,6-hexachlorocyclohexane or gammaxene. It is obtained by the addition of three chlorine molecules to one benzene molecule, in presence of sunlight.