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A crystalline hydrocarbon, C8H8; r.d. 1.29; m.p. 131°C. It has a novel structure with eight carbon atoms at the corners if a cube, each attached to a hydrogen. Cubane was first synthesized in 1964 by Philip Eaton. The C-C-C bond angle of 90° is highly strained and cubane and its derivatives have been investigated as high-energy fuels and explosives. In particular, octanitrocubane, in which the hydrogen atoms are replaced by –NO2 groups is possibly the most powerful chemical explosive known, although, so far, only small amounts have been synthesized. It decomposes to carbon dioxide and nitrogen:C8 (NO2)8 → 8CO2+4N2

C8 (NO2)8 → 8CO2+4N2


Subjects: Chemistry.

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