Bromine

CAS RN: 7726-95-6

Exposure Summary

Bromine's production and use in the manufacture of flame retardants, oil well drilling fluids, pesticides, pharmaceuticals and other compounds may result in its release to the environment through various waste streams; its use as a fumigant for stored grains and other produce and use as water disinfectant in hot tubs, swimming pools and whirlpools will result in its direct release to the environment. If released to air, a vapor pressure of 212 mm Hg at 25 deg C indicates bromine will exist solely as a vapor in the atmosphere. Vapor-phase bromine in the atmosphere (BR2) will react with photochemically-produced hydroxyl radicals; the half-life for this reaction in air is estimated to be 8.6 hours. Bromine absorbs at wavelengths >290 nm and, therefore, may be susceptible to direct photolysis by sunlight. If released to soil, volatilization from moist soil surfaces is expected to be an important fate process based upon a Henry's Law constant of 1.32X10-3 atm-cu m/mole. Bromine is expected to volatilize rapidly from dry soil surfaces based upon its vapor pressure. If released into water, volatilization from water surfaces is expected to be an important fate process based upon this compound's Henry's Law constant. When bromine dissolves in water, it partially disproportionates into HOBr (hypobromous acid). Above pH 3, the fraction present as Br2 decreases and HOBr is formed; between pH 6 and pH 8, most of the bromine is present as HOBr. Bromine will slowly be reduced to bromide by natural oxidizable materials in water and soil. Occupational exposure to bromine may occur through inhalation and dermal contact with this compound at workplaces where bromine is produced or used. (SRC)
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