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General Description

  • Synonyms: Isopropyl benzene; Isopropylbenzene; 2-Phenyl propane; Cumol
  • OSHA IMIS Code Number: 0780
  • Chemical Abstracts Service (CAS) Registry Number: 98-82-8
  • NIOSH Registry of Toxic Effects of Chemical Substances (RTECS) Identification Number: GR8575000
  • Department of Transportation Regulation Number (49 CFR 172.101) and Emergency Response Guidebook: 1918 130
  • NIOSH Pocket Guide to Chemical Hazards, Cumene: chemical description, physical properties, potentially hazardous incompatibilities, and more

Exposure Limits

  • OSHA Permissible Exposure Limit (PEL):
  • American Conference of Governmental Industrial Hygienists (ACGIH) Threshold Limit Value (TLV) (1997): 50 ppm (246 mg/m3) TWA
  • National Institute for Occupational Safety and Health (NIOSH) Recommended Exposure Limit (REL): 50 ppm (245 mg/m3) TWA; Skin

Health Factors

NIOSH Immediately Dangerous To Life or Health Concentration (IDLH): 900 ppm [LEL]

Potential Symptoms: Eye, mucous membrane irritation; headaches; dry skin, dermatitis; dizziness, ataxia, drowsiness, narcosis; coma.

Health Effects: Irritation-Eye, Nose, Throat, Skin---Moderate (HE15); Narcosis (HE8)

Affected Organs: Eyes, skin, upper respiratory system, CNS


  1. Above 31°C, explosive vapor/air mixtures may be formed.
  2. Unconsciousness may occur at levels of 4,000 ppm or greater.
  3. Swallowing the liquid may cause aspiration into the lungs with the risk of chemical pneumonitis.

Literature Basis:

  • International Chemical Safety Cards (WHO/IPCS/ILO): Cumene.
  • EPA Air Toxics Website: Cumene. U.S. Environmental Protection Agency Technology Transfer Network.
  • Pohanish, R.P. (editor): Cumene. In, Sittig's Handbook of Toxic and Hazardous Chemicals and Carcinogens, Fourth Ed., Vol. 1. Norwich, NY: Noyes Publications, William Andrew Publishing, 2002, pp. 682-684.

Date Last Revised: 02/05/2004

Monitoring Methods used by OSHA

Primary Laboratory Sampling/Analytical Method (SLC1):
  • Charcoal Tube (100/50 mg sections)
  • analytical solvent: (99:1) Carbon Disulfide/Dimethylformamide
  • maximum volume: 24 Liters
  • maximum flow rate: 0.05 L/min
  • current analytical method: Gas Chromatography; GC/FID
  • method reference: OSHA Analytical Method (OSHA PV2137)
  • method classification: Partially Validated
Wipe Sampling Method:
  • Charcoal pad
  • note: seal in glass vial for shipment

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