Ethylene - C2H4
This page presents information about ethylene (C2H4) - or ethene, appropriate detection means - ethylene gas detector - and respiratory protective equipment (gas mask or PAPR with type A gas filters).
Ethylene (C2H4) properties
Ethylene (C2H4) - also known as ethene - is used for many applications in the chemical industry. It is the basis of petrochemistry, particularly for plastics production. Its derivatives – such as ethylene oxide or ethanol – are widely used in the pharmaceutical industry for their disinfectant properties. This gas is also used to stimulate and grow climacteric fruits (kiwis, bananas…).
|CAS||TWA (8 hours)||STEL (15 minutes)||LEL||IP||Density / Air||Filter / SCBA|
|74-85-1||-||-||2.7 %||10.51 eV||0.98||A|
Ethylene effects on health
Ethylene (C2H4) is a colorless gas hardly detectable through smell. Highly flammable, its explosive limits are set between 2.70 and 36% volume. At high concentrations, it may irritate the breathing system or cause dizziness. Even if ethylene is not toxic, it can transform into ethylene oxide in the human body, and this toxic substance is classified as carcinogenic by the IARC*.
*IARC: International Agency for Research on Cancer (depends on the WHO World Health Organization)
Ethylene gas detector - C2H4
Hardly detectable through smell, only an ethylene gas detector can accurately measure concentrations of this gas. Moreover, as ethylene is a volatile organic compound with a 10.51 eV ionization potential, it is recommended to use a VOC photo-ionization lamp detector.
For calibration and gas testing of your fixed or portable gas detectors, ethylene calibration gas cylinders are available.
C2H4 respiratory protection - Ethylene
At low concentrations, ethylene can be filtered with an A gas filter. At high concentrations, this asphyxiating gas causes suffocation, thus it is advised to wear a self-contained breathing apparatus or a supplied air respirator for long-term interventions.