Phosgene is the chemical compound with the formula COCl2. This colorless gas gained infamy as a chemical weapon during World War I. It is also a valued industrial reagent and building block in synthesis of pharmaceuticals and other organic compounds. In low concentrations, its odor resembles freshly cut hay or grass. In addition to its industrial production, small amounts occur naturally from the breakdown and the combustion oforganochlorine compounds, such as those used in refrigeration systems. The chemical was named by combining the Greek words ‘phos’ (meaning light) and genesis (birth); it does not mean it contains any phosphorus (cf. phosphine).
Triphosgene (bis(trichloromethyl) carbonate (BTC), C3Cl6O3) is a chemical compound that is used as a safer substitute for phosgene, because at room temperature it is a solid crystal, as…
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