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CHEMINFO Record Number: 89
CCOHS Chemical Name: Ethylene

Bicarburetted hydrogen
Liquid ethylene
Olefiant gas

Chemical Name French: Éthylène
Chemical Name Spanish: Etileno
CAS Registry Number: 74-85-1
UN/NA Number(s): 1962 1038
RTECS Number(s): KU5340000
EU EINECS/ELINCS Number: 200-815-3
Chemical Family: Unsaturated aliphatic hydrocarbon / alkene / hydrocarbon gas
Molecular Formula: C2-H4
Structural Formula: CH2=CH2


Appearance and Odour:
Colourless gas with a slight, sweet and musty odour.(8,18)

Odour Threshold:
Wide range of reported values: 17 to 959 ppm. Acceptable values are: 270 ppm (310 mg/m3) (detection); 418 ppm (480 mg/m3) (recognition) (19)

Warning Properties:
Insufficient warning properties as material is a simple asphyxiant.

Ethylene can be shipped as a compressed gas at 8274-8618 kPa (1200-1250 psig; 81.6-85 atm) and 21.1 deg C (70 deg F), or as a refrigerated liquid. It is shipped in cylinders or in tube trailers. Semi-refrigerated tankers transport liquid ethylene at atmospheric pressure and -104 deg C. The majority of ethylene produced in the United States and Western Europe is transported and stored in integrated, underground pipeline systems. In these pipelines, ethylene is transported as a gas at a very high pressure (5000-5700 kPa (cited as 5-5.7 MPa) (49-56 atm)).(18,20) Ethylene is available in several grades ranging in minimal purity from 98.0 to 99.99%. Typical impurities include small amounts of methane, ethane, propane, acetylene, propylene, C4-hydrocarbons, carbon monoxide, carbon dioxide, hydrogen, oxygen, nitrogen, methanol, water and sulfur.(7,18,20)

Uses and Occurrences:
Ethylene is used mainly in the manufacture of high and low density polyethylene (about 50%), ethylene oxide, ethylene dichloride and ethylene glycol. Smaller amounts are used to make ethylbenzene, ethanol, other linear alcohols, acetaldehyde, styrene, vinyl acetate and linear olefins. Ethylene is also used as a refrigerant and as a fuel for metal cutting and welding; and to accelerate plant growth and the ripening of bananas, other fruit and vegetables. Historically, it was used as an anesthetic.(8,18,20)
Ethylene's occurrence in the environment is widespread, arising from both natural and man-made sources. Ethylene is a natural product emitted by fruits, flowers, and other vegetation. Small amounts are found in volcanic emissions and natural gas. The main man-made sources are from combustion of gas, fuel, coal and biomass. Since ethylene is produced and consumed in closed systems, the emission from industrial sources is mainly due to uncontrolled leaks, spills, blowouts and other accidents, and from work in tanks that contained ethylene.(6,7)


Colourless gas or refrigerated liquid with a slight, sweet and musty odour. EXTREMELY FLAMMABLE GAS. Liquid can accumulate static charge by flow, splashing or agitation. COMPRESSED GAS. Cylinders and closed containers may rupture violently if heated. Asphyxiant. Confined space hazard. High concentrations can displace oxygen in the air and cause life-threatening asphyxiation (suffocation). Rapid evaporation of the refrigerated liquid can cause frostbite. POSSIBLE MUTAGEN - May cause genetic damage, based on animal information.


Effects of Short-Term (Acute) Exposure

Ethylene is a gas at room temperature and pressure. Ethylene can be liquefied under extreme pressure and very low temperatures. Concentrations of less than 2.5% in air (25000 ppm) do not cause harmful effects and are not irritating to the nose, throat or lungs.(1) At high concentrations, ethylene acts as an asphyxiant. Asphyxiants displace oxygen in the air and can cause symptoms of oxygen deprivation (asphyxiation). The available oxygen should be a minimum of 18% or harmful effects will result.(3,4) Very high concentrations of ethylene may be encountered if the liquefied gas escapes from its cylinder or if the gas accumulates in a confined space.

Effects of oxygen deficiency are: 12-16% - breathing and pulse rate are increased, with slight muscular incoordination; 10-14% - emotional upsets, abnormal fatigue from exertion, disturbed respiration; 6-10% - nausea and vomiting, inability to move freely, collapse, possible lack of consciousness; below 6% - convulsive movements, gasping, possible respiratory collapse and death. Since exercise increases the body's need for oxygen, symptoms will occur more quickly during exertion in an oxygen-deficient environment.(3,4) Survivors of oxygen deprivation may show damage to some or all organs including the central nervous system and the brain. These effects may or may not be reversible with time, depending on the degree and duration of the low oxygen and the amount of tissue injury.(4) Marked memory disturbances were reported following exposure to 375,000 ppm (37.5%) ethylene for 15 minutes.(1, unconfirmed) This effect may have been due to oxygen deprivation.

Skin Contact:
Ethylene gas itself is not irritating to the skin, but direct contact with liquefied ethylene gas escaping from a cylinder can cause frostbite (freezing of the tissue). Symptoms of mild frostbite include numbness, prickling and itching in the affected area. Symptoms of more severe frostbite include a burning sensation and stiffness of the affected area. The skin may become waxy white or yellow. Blistering, tissue death and gangrene may also develop in severe cases.

Eye Contact:
Ethylene gas itself is not irritating to the eyes, but direct contact with the liquefied gas escaping from its cylinder can cause freezing of the eye. Permanent eye damage or blindness could result.

Ingestion is not an applicable route of exposure for gases.

Effects of Long-Term (Chronic) Exposure

There is no reliable human information available. No conclusions can be drawn from a study of ethylene and ethylene oxide production workers, because of mixed exposures and poor reporting of the study.(5) Animal toxicity information suggests that ethylene will not cause significant health effects following long-term exposure.


The International Agency for Research on Cancer (IARC) has concluded that there is inadequate evidence for the carcinogenicity of ethylene in humans and inadequate evidence in experimental animals.(6) About 2-3% of inhaled ethylene is metabolized to ethylene oxide, a recognized carcinogen.(37,38,39) However, the significance of the conversion of ethylene to ethylene oxide is controversial. Case-control studies of brain cancers identified among Texas petrochemical workers have reported increased risks associated with exposure to multiple chemicals, including ethylene. However, the findings were not statistically significant and the cancer risk for ethylene exposure was not associated with increased duration of employment. The observed increases in brain cancers could not be attributed to a specific chemical exposure.(34) Negative results were obtained in a study using rats.

The International Agency for Research on Cancer (IARC) has concluded that this chemical is not classifiable as to its carcinogenicity to humans (Group 3).

The American Conference of Governmental Industrial Hygienists (ACGIH) has designated this chemical as not classifiable as a human carcinogen (A4).

The US National Toxicology Program (NTP) has not listed this chemical in its report on carcinogens.

Teratogenicity and Embryotoxicity:
No human information was located. No developmental effects were observed in an unpublished animal study with exposures to up to 5000 ppm ethylene.

Reproductive Toxicity:
No human information was located. No reproductive effects were observed in an unpublished animal study with exposures to up to 5000 ppm ethylene.

Ethylene is mutagenic based on studies using live rats and mice, which show that inhalation exposure causes DNA adducts in several tissues. No human information was located for ethylene. There is evidence that a small amount of absorbed ethylene is metabolized in humans to form ethylene oxide, a known mutagen.

Toxicologically Synergistic Materials:
In rats, pretreatment with polychlorinated biphenyl followed by inhalation exposure to a very high concentration of ethylene for 4 hours resulted in liver toxicity.

Potential for Accumulation:
Ethylene does not accumulate in the body. The most common route of exposure is by inhalation. Volunteers inhaling 5 or 50 ppm for 2 hours metabolized about 2% to ethylene oxide and exhaled 98% unchanged. The half-life was 0.65 hours (time required for half of the substance to be cleared from the blood).(38) In a study of fruit store workers exposed to 0.02-3.35 ppm ethylene, the conversion of ethylene to ethylene oxide was estimated to be 3%.(39) In both studies, the conversion of ethylene to ethylene oxide was determined based on the production of hemoglobin adducts. Ethylene oxide is a carcinogen, mutagen and reproductive toxin. Refer to the CHEMINFO review of ethylene oxide for more information.


This chemical is extremely flammable, an asphyxiant and a possible mutagen. Take proper precautions to ensure your own safety before attempting rescue (e.g. remove any sources of ignition, wear appropriate protective equipment, use the "buddy" system). Remove source of contamination or move victim to fresh air. If breathing has stopped, trained personnel should begin artificial respiration (AR) or, if the heart has stopped, cardiopulmonary resuscitation (CPR) or automated external defibrillation (AED) immediately. If breathing is difficult, trained personnel should administer emergency oxygen. Immediately obtain medical attention.

Skin Contact:
GAS: Not applicable. No effects expected. LIQUEFIED GAS: Quickly remove victim from source of contamination and briefly flush with lukewarm, gently flowing water. DO NOT attempt to rewarm the affected area on site. DO NOT rub area or apply dry heat. Gently remove clothing or jewelry that may restrict circulation. Carefully cut around clothing that sticks to the skin and remove the rest of the garment. Loosely cover the affected area with a sterile dressing. DO NOT allow the victim to drink alcohol or smoke. Quickly transport victim to an emergency care facility.

Eye Contact:
GAS: Not applicable. No effects expected. LIQUEFIED GAS: Quickly remove victim from source of contamination. Immediately and briefly flush eye(s) with lukewarm, gently flowing water. DO NOT attempt to rewarm. Cover both eyes with a sterile dressing. DO NOT allow victim to drink alcohol or smoke. Quickly transport victim to an emergency care facility.

Ingestion is not an applicable route of exposure for gases.

First Aid Comments:
Provide general supportive measures (comfort, warmth, rest).
Consult a doctor and/or the nearest Poison Control Centre for all exposures except minor instances of inhalation or skin contact.
Some first aid procedures recommended above require advanced first aid training. Protocols for undertaking advanced procedures must be developed in consultation with a doctor and routinely reviewed.
All first aid procedures should be periodically reviewed by a doctor familiar with the material and its conditions of use in the workplace.


Flash Point:
Approximately -136 deg C (-212.8 deg F) (closed cup) (7,24); extremely flammable gas (23)

Lower Flammable (Explosive) Limit (LFL/LEL):
2.7% at 25 deg C (18,25)

Upper Flammable (Explosive) Limit (UFL/UEL):
36% at 25 deg C (18,25)

Autoignition (Ignition) Temperature:
490 deg C (914 deg F) (8,18); range of values reported: 425-542.8 deg C (797-1009 deg F) (8,20)

Sensitivity to Mechanical Impact:
Not sensitive. Normally stable.

Sensitivity to Static Charge:
Liquefied ethylene can accumulate static charge by flow, splashing or agitation due its low electrical conductivity.(26) Vapour in the flammable range can be ignited readily by a static discharge of sufficient energy.

Electrical Conductivity:
Not available

Minimum Ignition Energy:
0.07 millijoules (26,27)

Combustion and Thermal Decomposition Products:
Carbon monoxide, carbon dioxide and other toxic, irritating chemicals.

Fire Hazard Summary:
Extremely flammable gas. Will readily ignite at room temperature. Very low ignition energy. Liquid can accumulate static charge by flow, splashing or agitation. Gas can be ignited by a static charge. Leaking gas will be initially colder and heavier than air and may hug the ground and travel a considerable distance to a source of ignition and flash back to a leak or open container. Can displace oxygen and cause suffocation (simple asphyxiant), especially in confined spaces. Compressed gas. Heat from a fire can cause a rapid build-up of pressure inside cylinders, which may cause explosive rupture and sudden release of large amounts of flammable gas.

Extinguishing Media:
Carbon dioxide, dry chemical powder, water spray or fog. High expansion foam may be effective on liquid pools. Foam manufacturers should be consulted for recommendations regarding application rates.

Extinguishing Media to be Avoided:
Water will not be effective as an extinguishing agent because it cannot cool ethylene below its flash point, and may also increase evolution of gas from liquid pools.(24)

Fire Fighting Instructions:
Evacuate area and fight fire from a safe distance or protected location. Approach fire from upwind to avoid toxic decomposition products.
For fires involving flammable gases, the best procedure is to stop the flow of gas before attempting to extinguish the fire. To extinguish the fire, while allowing continued flow of the gas, is extremely dangerous. The gas could form an explosive mixture with air and reignite, which may cause far more damage than if the original fire had been allowed to burn. In some cases, extinguishing the fire with carbon dioxide or dry chemical powder may be necessary to permit immediate access to valves to shut off the flow of gas. However, this must be done carefully. If it is not possible to stop the flow of gas and if there is no risk to the surrounding area, it is preferable to allow continued burning, while protecting exposed materials with water spray to prevent ignition of other combustible materials, until the flow of gas can be stopped.
Gas clouds may be controlled by water spray or fog. The addition of water to pools of liquefied ethylene may increase evolution of the gas.
Isolate materials not yet involved in the fire and protect personnel. Handle damaged cylinders with extreme care. Move cylinders from fire area if this can be done without risk. Otherwise, fire-exposed containers, cylinders, tanks or pipelines should be cooled by application of hose streams and this should begin as soon as possible (within the first several minutes) and should concentrate on any unwetted portions of the container. Take care not to get water inside container. Reverse flow into a cylinder may cause rupture. No part of a cylinder should be subjected to a temperature higher than 52 deg C (approximately 125 deg F). If this is not possible, use unmanned monitor nozzles and immediately evacuate the area.
For a massive fire in a large area, use unmanned hose holder or monitor nozzles; if this is not possible withdraw from fire area and allow fire to burn. Stay away from ends of tanks, but be aware that flying material from ruptured tanks may travel in any direction. Withdraw immediately in case of rising sound from venting safety device or any discolouration of tank due to fire. After the fire has been extinguished, explosives atmospheres may linger. Before entering such an area, especially confined areas, check the atmosphere with an appropriate monitoring device. In addition, because of the danger of life-threatening asphyxiation (suffocation), check the atmosphere for sufficient oxygen.

Protection of Fire Fighters:
Ethylene itself, is only slightly hazardous to health. However, it can displace oxygen, reducing the amount available for breathing. Firefighters may enter the area if positive pressure self-contained breathing apparatus (NIOSH approved or equivalent) and full Bunker Gear is worn.


NFPA - Health: 2 - Intense or continued (but not chronic) exposure could cause temporary incapacitation or possible residual injury.
NFPA - Flammability: 4 - Will rapidly or completely vaporize at atmospheric pressure and normal ambient temperature, or readily disperse in air and burn readily.
NFPA - Instability: 2 - Undergoes violent chemical change at elevated temperatures and pressures, or reacts violently with water, or may form explosive mixtures with water.


Molecular Weight: 28.05

Conversion Factor:
1 ppm = 1.145 mg/m3; 1 mg/m3 = 0.873 ppm at 25 deg C (calculated)

Physical State: Gas
Melting Point: -169.15 deg C (-272.5 deg F) (7,18); -169.4 deg C (-272.9 deg F) (8,25)
Boiling Point: -103.7 deg C (-154.7 deg F) (18,20)
Relative Density (Specific Gravity): Not applicable (gas)
Solubility in Water: Sparingly soluble (22.6 mL/100 mL (0.028 g/100 g) at 0 deg C; 12.2 mL/100 mL (0.014 g/100 g) at 20 deg C; and 101.3 kPa).(25)
Solubility in Other Liquids: Very soluble in diethyl ether; soluble in acetone and benzene; slightly soluble in ethanol (200 mL/100 mL at 25 deg C).(25)
Coefficient of Oil/Water Distribution (Partition Coefficient): Log P(oct) = 1.13 (experimental) (21)
pH Value: Not available
Viscosity-Dynamic: LIQUEFIED GAS: 0.16 mPa.s (0.16 centipoise) at -100 deg C (18); 0.07 mPa.s (0.07 centipoise) at 0 deg C (20)
Surface Tension: LIQUEFIED GAS: 16.5 mN/m (16.5 dynes/cm) at -104 deg C; 1.1 mN/m (1.1 dynes/cm) at 0 deg C (20)
Vapour Density: 0.978 at 0 deg C (8); 0.969 at 21.1 deg C (22) (air = 1)
Vapour Pressure: 7000 kPa (69 atm) at 21 deg C; 2275 kPa (22.4 atm) at 0 deg C (estimated from graph) (8)
Vapour Pressure at 50 deg C: Greater than 7000 kPa (69 atm) (estimated) (8)
Saturation Vapour Concentration: Not applicable; gas at normal temperatures.
Evaporation Rate: Not applicable; gas at normal temperatures. Gas will be rapidly released from containers.
Henry's Law Constant: 2.31 x 10(4) Pa.m3/mol (cited as 0.228 atm.m3/mol) at 25 deg C (experimental) (28); log H = 0.97 (dimensionless constant; calculated)
Critical Temperature: 9.2 deg C (48.6 deg F) (18,22); 9.9 deg C (49.8 deg F) (8,20)
Critical Pressure: 5032-5120 kPa (49.7-50.5 atm) (20,22)

Other Physical Properties:
TRIPLE POINT: -169.2 deg C (-272.5 deg F) at 0.1014 kPa abs (8)


Stable at normal temperature and pressure.

Hazardous Polymerization:
Normally stable. At high pressures (60-350 MPa) and temperatures (up to 350 deg C), ethylene can polymerize in the presence of initiators. It also polymerizes at low pressures (0.1 to 20 MPa) in the presence of catalysts.(18,20)

Incompatibility - Materials to Avoid:

NOTE: Chemical reactions that could result in a hazardous situation (e.g. generation of flammable or toxic chemicals, fire or detonation) are listed here. Many of these reactions can be done safely if specific control measures (e.g. cooling of the reaction) are in place. Although not intended to be complete, an overview of important reactions involving common chemicals is provided to assist in the development of safe work practices.

STRONG OXIDIZING AGENTS (e.g. chlorine dioxide, fluorine, perchlorates or peroxides) - increased risk of fire, explosion or violent reaction.(23,26)
STRONG ACIDS (e.g. hydrogen bromide, hydrogen chloride, nitric acid or sulfuric acid) - may react violently, with the risk of fire and explosion.(24,26)
HALOCARBONS (e.g. bromotrichloromethane, carbon tetrachloride, chlorotrifluoroethylene or tetrafluoroethylene) - may explode violently under various conditions, including high pressures and temperatures.(23,29)
CHLORINE - reacts explosively in sunlight or ultraviolet light, or in the presence of mercury(I)oxide, mercury(II)oxide, or silver oxide.(23,24,29)
ALUMINUM CHLORIDE or ALUMINUM CHLORIDE-NITROMETHANE - may react violently or explosively.(23,29)
ORGANIC PEROXIDES (e.g. benzoyl peroxide) - may cause violent polymerization.(18,20)
NITROGEN DIOXIDE or OZONE - forms extremely unstable compounds which may explode.(23,29)
COPPER - polymerization of ethylene in the presence of metallic copper can become violent at high pressures and temperatures.(29)
5A MOLECULAR SIEVES - exothermic reaction and explosion occurs.(29)

Hazardous Decomposition Products:
None reported

Conditions to Avoid:
Heat, sparks, static discharge, open flames, high temperatures and pressures.

Corrosivity to Metals:
Ethylene is not corrosive to the common metals, such as cast iron, stainless steel, carbon steel (e.g. types 1010, 1020, 1075 and 1095), aluminum (e.g. types 3003, 5052 and 6061-T6), nickel-base alloys, Monel and Hastelloy, copper and its alloys, copper-nickel, bronze and brass, and tantalum.(30,31)

Corrosivity to Non-Metals:
Ethylene attacks the plastic, polyvinyl chloride (PVC) (35); and the elastomers, ethylene propylene (EP and EPDM), styrene butadiene (SBR), silicone and Fluoraz (fluorinated copolymer) (36). Ethylene does not attack plastics, like Teflon, nylon, polyurethane (rigid), and high-density polyethylene (HDPE) (35); and elastomers, like nitrile Buna N (NBR), butyl rubber (isobutylene isoprene), Viton A, polyurethane, chlorosulfonated polyethylene (CSM), low-density polyethylene (LDPE), Teflon, and Kalrez (perfluorinated elastomer) (36).

Stability and Reactivity Comments:
Explosive decomposition may occur in the absence of air at high temperatures (360 deg C) and pressures (17 MPa). Decomposition can occur at lower temperatures and pressures in the presence of high energy initiators (e.g. hot wire plus gun cotton, exploding wire, or electric).(29)


No standard animal toxicity values were located.

Effects of Short-Term (Acute) Exposure:

Ethylene is essentially non- toxic following short-term exposure of experimental animals.

No harmful effects were observed in rats exposed to up to 57000 ppm for 4 hours or to 10000 ppm for 5 hours.(6,9) Decreased food intake, physical activity, white cell counts and platelet counts were observed in rats exposed to 60% (600,000 ppm) ethylene (with oxygen levels maintained) for 6 days.(10) Cardiac sensitization has not been observed in dogs.(1)

Effects of Long-Term (Chronic) Exposure:

Ethylene is essentially non- toxic following long-term exposure of experimental animals.

No harmful effects were observed in rats exposed to 300, 1000 or 3000 ppm ethylene (greater than 99.9% pure) for up to 24 months.(11) Similarly, no exposure-related harmful effects were observed in rats exposed to up to 10000 ppm for 13 weeks.(12) No harmful effects were observed in adult rats following exposure to 1 or 3 mg/m3 (about 1-3 ppm) for 98 days. Decreased weight gain and body length was observed when newborn rats were similarly exposed, suggesting a higher sensitivity.(13)

The International Agency for Research on Cancer (IARC) has concluded that there is inadequate evidence for the carcinogenicity of ethylene in experimental animals.(6) Carcinogenic effects (tumours) were not observed in rats exposed to 300, 1000 or 3000 ppm ethylene (greater than 99.9% pure) for up to 24 months.(11)

Teratogenicity, Embryotoxicity and/or Fetotoxicity:
The limited information available does not suggest that ethylene causes developmental toxicity.
In an unpublished study, rats (10/sex/group) were exposed head-only to 0, 200, 1000 or 5000 ppm ethylene for two weeks prior to mating, during the mating period and until the day prior to necropsy of the males (minimum 28 days) or until day 20 of gestation for the females. The females were allowed to litter and rear their offspring to day 4 post-partum. There were no signs of parental toxicity or adverse effects on maternal and suckling behaviour or growth and development of the offspring.(7, unconfirmed) This study is limited by the small number of animals/group.

Reproductive Toxicity:
The limited information available does not suggest that ethylene causes reproductive toxicity.
No adverse effects on male or female reproductive performance or fertility were observed in a reproductive/developmental toxicity study where rats were exposed to up to 5000 ppm ethylene. This study is reviewed above under the heading "Teratogenicity/Embryotoxicity and/or Fetotoxicity".

Ethylene is mutagenic. In one study, inhalation of ethylene caused dose- and time-related increases in DNA adducts in rats and mice. DNA adducts were also produced in two inhalation studies using rats and mice exposed to a single concentration. Ethylene is metabolized to ethylene oxide, a known mutagen and the adducts formed are the same as those caused by ethylene oxide.(40)
Positive results (DNA adducts) were observed in live rats and mice exposed by inhalation to 0, 40, 1000 or 3000 ppm ethylene for 1-4 weeks (6 hr/d, 5 d/wk). There were significant dose- and time-related increases in DNA adducts in the brain, spleen, liver and lungs.(40) DNA adducts were also produced in the spleen, liver, brain and lungs of rats and mice exposed by inhalation to 3000 ppm ethylene for 5 days (6 hr/d) and in the lymphocytes and liver of rats exposed to 300 ppm for 3 days (12 hr/d).(15,41) No firm conclusions can be drawn from another test in which DNA adducts were observed because of design limitations.(15) Negative results (bone marrow micronucleus, gene mutation) were obtained in live rats and mice exposed by inhalation to up to 3000 ppm ethylene for 1-4 weeks (6 hr/d, 5 d/wk).(14,40)
Negative results (chromosomal aberrations) were obtained in cultured mammalian cells, with and without metabolic activation.(7, unconfirmed) Negative results (gene mutation) were obtained in tests using bacteria, with and without metabolic activation.(11,17,42)

Toxicological Synergisms:
A 4-hour inhalation exposure to 20000 ppm ethylene caused acute liver injury (as measured by biochemical changes) in male rats pretreated with polychlorinated biphenyl (PCB).(43)


Selected Bibliography:
(1) Carreon, T. Aliphatic hydrocarbons: ethene. In: Patty's toxicology. 5th ed. Edited by E. Bingham, et al. Vol. 4. Chpt. 49. John Wiley and Sons, 2001
(2) Compressed Gas Association. Safety guidelines for compressed gases and cryogenic liquids. In: Handbook of compressed gases. 4th ed. Kluwer Academic Publishers, 1999. p. 16-39
(3) Leikauf, G.D., et al. Inorganic compounds of carbon, nitrogen and oxygen. In: Patty's Toxicology. 5th ed. Vol. 3. Edited by E. Bingham, et al. John Wiley & Sons, 2001
(4) Wilkenfeld, M. Simple asphyxiants. In: Environmental and Occupational Medicine. 3rd ed. Edited by W.N. Rom. Lippincott-Raven Publishers, 1998. p. 651-655
(5) Spasovski, M., et al. State of health of workers engaged in the production of ethylene and ethylene oxide. Khigiena i Zdraveopazvne. Vol. 23, no. 1 (1980). p. 41-47. (English translation: NIOSHTIC Control No.: 00134683)
(6) International Agency for Research on Cancer. Ethylene. In: IARC Monographs on the evaluation of carcinogenic risks to humans. Vol. 60. Some industrial chemicals. World Health Organization, 1994. p. 45-71
(7) Ethylene. CAS No. 74-85-1. OECD Screening Information Dataset (SIDS) High Production Volume Chemicals. UNEP Publications, Oct. 1998. Available at : <>
(8) Compressed Gas Association. Ethylene. In: Handbook of compressed gases. 4th ed. Kluwer Academic Publishers, 1999. p. 351-356
(9) Guest, D., et al. Effects of Aroclor 1254 on disposition and hepatotoxicity of ethylene in the rat. Toxicology and Applied Pharmacology. Vol. 57, no. 3 (Mar. 15, 1981). p. 325-334
(10) Aldrete, J.A., et al. Effects of prolonged inhalation of anesthetic and other gases on blood and marrow of rats. In: Toxicity of anesthetics. Proceedings of a Research Symposium held in Seattle, May 12-13, 1967. Edited by B.R. Fink. The Williams and Wilkins Co., 1968. p. 105-111
(11) Hamm, Jr., T. E., et al. Chronic toxicity and oncogenicity bioassay of inhaled ethylene in Fischer-344 rats. Fundamental and Applied Toxicology. Vol. 4, no. 3, part 1 (June, 1984). p. 473-478
(12) Rhudy, R.L., et al. Ninety-day subacute inhalation study with ethylene in albino rats. Abstract. Toxicology and Applied Pharmacology. Vol. 43, no. 1 (July 1978). p. 285
(13) Krasovitskaya, M.L., et al. Long-term effect of low concentrations of ethylene and trichloroethylene on newborn animals. Hygiene and Sanitation. Vol. 33, no. 4-6 (Apr. 1968). p. 146-149
(14) Vergnes, J.S., et al. Effects of ethylene on micronucleus formation in the bone marrow of rats and mice following four weeks of inhalation exposure. Mutation Research. Vol. 324, no. 3 (July 1994). p. 87-91
(15) Segerback, D. Alkylation of DNA and hemoglobin in the mouse following exposure to ethene and ethene oxide. Chemico-Biological Interactions. Vol. 45, no. 2 (July 15, 1983). p. 139-151
(16) Eide, I., et al. Uptake, distribution and formation of hemoglobin and DNA adducts after inhalation of C2-C8 1-alkenes (olefins) in the rat. Carcinogenesis. Vol. 16, no. 7 (July 1995). p. 1603-1609
(17) Victorin, K., et al. A method for studying the mutagenicity of some gaseous compounds in Salmonella typhimurium. Environmental and Molecular Mutagenesis. Vol. 11, no. 1 (1988). p. 65-77
(18) Sundaram, K.M., et al. Ethylene. In: Kirk-Othmer encyclopedia of chemical technology. John Wiley and Sons, 2005. Available at: <> {Subscription required}
(19) Odor thresholds for chemicals with established occupational health standards. American Industrial Hygiene Association, 1989. p. 19, 58
(20) Zimmermann, H., et al. Ethylene. In: Ullmann's encyclopedia of industrial chemistry. 7th ed. John Wiley and Sons, 2005. Available at: <> {Subscription required}
(21) Syracuse Research Corporation. Interactive LogKow (KowWin) Database Demo. Date unknown. Available at: <>
(22) Yaws, C.L. Ethylene. In: Matheson gas data book. 7th ed. McGraw Hill, 2001. p. 368-375
(23) Fire protection guide to hazardous materials. 13th ed. Edited by A.B. Spencer, et al. National Fire Protection Association, 2002. NFPA 325; NFPA 49; NFPA 491
(24) Emergency action guide for ethylene. Association of American Railroads, Jan. 1988
(25) Dean, J.A. Lange's handbook of chemistry. 15th ed. McGraw-Hill, Inc., 1999. p. 1.217, 5.4 to 5.5, 5.116, 5.143, 6.149
(26) Ethylene (liquid, refrigerated). In: Chemical safety sheets: working safely with hazardous chemicals. Kluwer Academic Publishers, 1991. p. 401
(27) Haase, H. Electrostatic hazards: their evaluation and control. Translated by M. Wald. Verlag Chemie, 1997. p. 108
(28) Syracuse Research Corporation. The Physical Properties Database (PHYSPROP). Interactive PhysProp Database Demo. Date unknown. Available at: <>
(29) Bretherick's reactive chemical hazards database. [CD-ROM]. 6th ed. Version 3.0. Edited by P.G. Urben. Butterworth-Heinemann Ltd., 1999
(30) Pruett, K.M. Chemical resistance guide to metals and alloys: a guide to chemical resistance of metals and alloys. Compass Publications, 1995. p. 122-133
(31) Corrosion data survey: metals section. 6th ed. National Association of Corrosion Engineers, 1985. p. 54-14 to 55-14
(32) Forsberg, K., et al. Quick selection guide to chemical protective clothing. 4th ed. Van Nostrand Reinhold, 2002
(33) European Communities (EC). Commission Directive 2004/73/EC. Apr. 29, 2004
(34) Ethylene. In: Documentation of threshold limit values and biological exposure indices. 7th ed. (Suppl.). American Conference of Governmental Industrial Hygienists, 2005
(35) Pruett, K.M. Chemical resistance guide for plastics: a guide to chemical resistance of engineering thermoplastics, fluoroplastics, fibers and thermoset resins. Compass Publications, 2000. p. 182-193
(36) Pruett, K.M. Chemical resistance guide for elastomers II: a guide to chemical resistance of rubber and elastomeric compounds. Compass Publications, 1994. p. C-146 to C-151
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Information on chemicals reviewed in the CHEMINFO database is drawn from a number of publicly available sources. A list of general references used to compile CHEMINFO records is available in the database Help.

Review/Preparation Date: 2005-11-08

Revision Indicators:
Vapour pressure 2006-01-17
Vapour pressure at 50 deg C 2006-01-17
Relative density 2006-09-28

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