carbon disulfide

Also found in: Dictionary, Thesaurus, Medical, Wikipedia.

carbon disulfide,

CS2, liquid organic compound; it is colorless, foul-smelling, flammable, and poisonous. It can be prepared by direct reaction of carbon, e.g., as charcoal, with sulfur. It is a widely used solvent, e.g., for rubber, and is used to treat alkali cellulose in the viscose process (a source of rayon and cellophane). Carbon disulfide reacts with chlorine in the presence of a catalyst to form carbon tetrachloride.

Carbon Disulfide


CS2, a compound of sulfur and carbon. Carbon disulfide is a colorless liquid with a density of 1.2927 g/cm3, a boiling point of 46.26°C, and a melting point of – 112.1°C. It is only slightly soluble in water but is miscible with alcohol, ether, and chloroform in any proportions. Vapors of carbon disulfide ignite at 236°C. The compound is decomposed by strong oxidizing agents (KMnO4) with the separation of sulfur. Carbon disulfide reacts with SO3 to form carbonyl sulfide, COS. With an oxide of chlorine, carbon disulfide reacts to form COCl2 (phosgene):

CS2 + 3Cl2O = COCl2 + 2SOl2

Upon heating with metal oxides, carbon disulfide readily exchanges sulfur for oxygen.

At elevated temperatures, carbon disulfide reacts with H2 to form H2S. Carbon disulfide is produced industrially by passing sulfur vapors over hot charcoal:

C + 2S = CS2

Carbon disulfide is used in industry as a solvent and an extraction medium. However, most carbon disulfide is used in the production of viscose.


Carbon disulfide is poisonous. Poisoning can occur when producing viscose and carbon disulfide and when using CS2 as a solvent and extraction medium. Carbon disulfide easily penetrates the blood through the respiratory system and skin. Acute poisoning is produced by concentrations of carbon disulfide in the air of 1 milligram per liter and higher. Carbon disulfide poisoning derives from the compound’s effect on the central and peripheral nervous systems, blood vessels, and metabolic processes.

Mild cases of acute poisoning are characterized by a narcotic effect (dizziness, a feeling of intoxication) on the victim. If the poisoning has been severe, excitation is induced with the possible development of a coma. Psychological changes can result from repeated acute poisoning. Functional neurovascular disorders, psychological instability, and sleep disorders are characteristic of chronic poisoning. Encephalitis and polyneuritis may develop upon prolonged chronic poisoning by carbon disulfide.

Preventive measures to be taken in working with carbon disulfide include the hermetic sealing of equipment, the mechanization of production processes, and the use of ventilators. The respiratory organs and skin can be protected by wearing, for example, respirators, gloves, and aprons. Prior and periodic medical examinations are mandatory.


Drogichina, E. A. Professional’nye bolezni nervnoi sistemy. Leningrad, 1968.
Professional’nye bolezni, 3rd ed. Moscow, 1973.


carbon disulfide

[¦kär·bən dī′səl‚fīd]
(organic chemistry)
CS2 A sulfide, used as a solvent for oils, fats, and rubbers and in paint removers.
References in periodicals archive ?
For a further study on the extraction potential of various mixtures of chloroform and carbon disulfide, a series of experiments were carried out, including the effects of these blends at different compositions and solid-liquid mass ratio, on the oil yield.
Special nasal cells called GC-D cells seem to respond to the carbon disulfide in rodent breath, experiments by Munger and his colleagues reveal.
At the suggestion of Mineralogical Record editor Wendell Wilson, a chemical approach was attempted, based on identifying trapped liquid inclusion of carbon disulfide [CS.
Analysis of hydrogen sulfide, carbon disulfide, and carbonyl sulfide plus other highly volatile sulfur-containing compounds in process gas streams is a critical quality control step in a variety of industries ranging from the manufacture of petrochemical products to carbonate beverage.
Chemical and physical agents that are reproductive hazards for women in the workplace include: cancer treatment drugs (health care workers, pharmacists); certain ethylene glycol ethers (electronic and semiconductor workers); carbon disulfide (viscose rayon workers); lead (battery makers, solderers, welders, radiator repairers, bridge repainters, firing range workers, home remodelers); ionizing radiation such as X-ray and gamma rays (health care workers, dental personnel, atomic workers); and strenuous physical labor (many types of workers).
The PELs for the following 20 chemicals will be the first to be addressed: carbon disulfide, carbon monoxide, chloroform, dimethyl sulfate, epichlorohydrin, ethylene dichloride, glutaraldehyde, n-hexane, 2-hexanone, hydrazine, hydrogen sulfide, manganese and compounds, mercury and compounds, nitrogen dioxide, perchloroethylene, sulfur dioxide, toluene, toluene diisocyanate, trimellitic anhydride, vinyl bromide.
By studying light given off by the splattering gases, scientists have discovered some pretty stinky stuff in Jupiter's atmosphere: chemicals such as hydrogen sulfide (a poisonous gas that smells like rotten eggs) and carbon disulfide.
Before 1986, carbon tetrachloride and carbon disulfide mixtures were the primary fumigants used during rail transport.
One of the major improvements at the Lowland site is an increased ability to recover and reuse raw materials - such as sodium sulfate and carbon disulfide ([CS.
Standards have been set for such reproductive toxicants as lead and ethylene oxide, and studies are under way on ethyl alcohol, carbon disulfide and aspirin, as well as Vitamin A.
The objectives of the proposal are firstly to study the individual contributions of the nonlinear refractive index of carbon disulfide under vibrational strong coupling in a Fabry-Perot cavity.