Boron nitride is a heat and chemically resistant refractory compound of boron and nitrogen with the chemical formula BN. It exists in various crystalline forms that are isoelectronic to a similarly structured carbon lattice. The hexagonal form corresponding to graphite is the most stable and soft among BN polymorphs, and is therefore used as a lubricant and an additive to cosmetic products. The cubic (sphalerite structure) variety analogous to diamond is called c-BN; it is softer than diamond, but its thermal and chemical stability is superior. The rare wurtzite BN modification is similar to lonsdaleite and may even be harder than the cubic form.
CAS Number: 10043-11-5
ECHA InfoCard: 100.030.111
EC Number: 233-136-6
Gmelin Reference: 216
PubChem CID: 66227
RTECS number: ED7800000
Molar mass: 24.82 g·mol−1
Appearance: Colorless crystals
Density: 2.1 (h-BN); 3.45 (c-BN) g/cm3
Melting point: 2,973 °C (5,383 °F; 3,246 K) sublimates (cBN)
Solubility in water: insoluble
Electron mobility: 200 cm2/(V·s) (cBN)
Refractive index (nD): 1.8 (h-BN); 2.1 (c-BN)
Because of excellent thermal and chemical stability, boron nitride ceramics are traditionally used as parts of high-temperature equipment. Boron nitride has potential use in nanotechnology. Nanotubes of BN can be produced that have a structure similar to that of carbon nanotubes, i.e. graphene (or BN) sheets rolled on themselves, but the properties are very different.
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