The main difference between chloroform and carbon tetrachloride is that chloroform has an elemental composition of carbon, hydrogen, and chlorine, whereas carbon tetrachloride has an elemental composition of carbon and chlorine.
Chloroform and carbon tetrachloride are both organic compounds that contain chlorine atoms. They both have the same chemical geometry, which is tetrahedral.
Key Areas Covered
1. What is Chloroform
– Definition, Properties, Applications
2. What is Carbon Tetrachloride
– Definition, Properties, Applications
3. Similarities Between Chloroform and Carbon Tetrachloride
– Outline of Common Features
4. Difference Between Chloroform and Carbon Tetrachloride
– Comparison of Key Differences
Chloroform, Carbon Tetrachloride
What is Chloroform
Chloroform is a non-flammable, clear, colourless liquid that is denser than water. It has a pleasant odour. It is also called trichloromethane. Chloroform is prepared by the chlorination of methane. It has an elemental composition of carbon, hydrogen, and chlorine. Moreover, it has a molecular formula of CHCl3 and a molecular weight of 119.37. Its boiling point is 61.2 degrees Celsius, and its melting point is -63.5 degrees Celsius. It has a density of 1.48 g/cm3. It has a tetrahedral geometry.
There are many uses of chloroform. One main use was as a general anesthetic. It was preferred over other anesthetics in the past because it was relatively inexpensive and easy to administer. But later, it was found that this compound would cause serious health risks such as liver damage, cardiac arrests, and death. Hence, chloroform is not used as an anesthetic anymore. It has also been used as a solvent in the past to dissolve fats, oils, and resins and in the production of dyes and pharmaceuticals. It has also been used as a cleaning agent in printing, textile manufacturing, and metalworking industries. But nowadays, the use of chloroform as a solvent has decreased due to its health risks and adverse environmental impacts. However, it is still useful in producing certain pesticides and herbicides and manufacturing some plastics and rubber products.
Exposure to chloroform has many adverse health effects. The effects can range from mild to severe, depending on the duration and level of exposure. Short-term exposure to low levels of chloroform can cause dizziness, headache, nausea, and irritation of the eyes, nose, and throat. Long-term exposure to high levels of chloroform can cause liver and kidney damage and cancer, as it is classified as a carcinogen.
What is Carbon Tetrachloride
Carbon tetrachloride is a non-flammable liquid that evaporates very quickly. It has a characteristic sweet odor similar to chloroform. It has an elemental composition of carbon and chlorine. Carbon tetrachloride has a molecular formula of CCL4. Its molecular weight is 153.8. It has a tetrahedral geometry. It is denser than water and is insoluble in water. The melting and boiling points of carbon tetrachloride are -22 degrees centigrade, and the boiling point is 76.7 degrees centigrade. In addition, the density of the compound is 1.59 g/cm3. Carbon tetrachloride has a high solvency power, which means that it is highly effective at dissolving and removing organic compounds.
There are many uses for carbon tetrachloride. It was mainly used as a cleaning agent in the past. It was used to clean electronic components, machinery, and other equipment. Carbon tetrachloride was also used as a fire extinguishing agent and a refrigerant. But later, it was discovered that carbon tetrachloride can be highly toxic and can cause serious health effects; hence its further use was restricted.
There are many health effects of carbon tetrachloride when inhaled, ingested, or absorbed through the skin. Short-term exposure to carbon tetrachloride can cause symptoms such as headache, nausea, dizziness, and confusion. Long-term exposure can lead to more serious health problems, such as liver and kidney damage, lung damage, and cancer. Ingesting carbon tetrachloride can cause severe damage to the gastrointestinal tract leading to nausea, vomiting, and diarrhea.
Similarities Between Chloroform and Carbon Tetrachloride
- Chloroform and carbon tetrachloride are both organic compounds.
- Moreover, they have a tetrahedral geometry.
- However, both have adverse effects on health.
- Although they had many applications in the past, they are not much used now due to their toxic nature.
Difference Between Chloroform and Carbon Tetrachloride
Chloroform is an organic compound with an elemental composition of carbon, hydrogen, and chlorine, whereas carbon tetrachloride is an organic compound with an elemental composition of carbon and chlorine.
The molecular formula of chloroform is CHCL3, whereas the molecular formula of carbon tetrachloride is CCL4.
Melting and Boiling Points
The melting and boiling points of chloroform are -63.5 degrees centigrade and 61.2 degrees centigrade, while the melting and boiling points of carbon tetrachloride are -22 degrees and 76.7 degrees centigrade.
Chloroform is considered to be less toxic than carbon tetrachloride.
The density of chloroform is 1.48 g/cm3, whereas the density of carbon tetrachloride is 1.59 g/cm3.
Chloroform was used as an anesthetic and a solvent in the past, but it is now used in pesticides and herbicides and in the manufacture of plastics and rubber. Carbon tetrachloride, on the other hand, was used as a cleaning agent, fire extinguishing agent, and refrigerant.
In brief, chloroform and carbon tetrachloride are two organic compounds with tetrahedral geometry. The main difference between chloroform and carbon tetrachloride is that chloroform has an elemental composition of carbon, hydrogen, and chlorine, whereas carbon tetrachloride has an elemental composition of carbon and chlorine.