Turpentines are semifluid substances consisting of resins dissolved in a volatile oil extracted from pine trees; this mixture is separable by various distillation techniques into a volatile portion called oil (or spirit) of turpentine and a nonvolatile portion called rosin.
Oil of turpentine is a colourless, oily, odorous, flammable, water-immiscible liquid with a hot, disagreeable taste. It is a good solvent for sulphur, phosphorus, resins, waxes, oils, and natural rubber. It hardens upon exposure to air. Chemically, oil of turpentine is a mixture of cyclic monoterpene hydrocarbons, the predominant constituent being pinene.
The largest use of turpentine oil is now in the chemical industry, as a raw material in the synthesis of resins, insecticides, oil additives, and synthetic pine oil and camphor. Turpentine oil is also used as a rubber solvent in the manufacture of plastics.
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