What is a chemical? (with photos)

There are about 150 chemicals in gasoline.

In its most basic form, a chemical is an element, as it has a specific molecular composition and can be produced or used during a natural chemical process. An element is a chemical substance made up of specific types of atoms that cannot be broken down further; in short, the elements are the purest forms of chemicals known to man. When several chemicals combine, a chemical compound is formed, which exists to combine different types of elements and therefore different reactions.


Chemicals include the fluids used to ensure vehicles run properly.

Perhaps the main use of chemicals is to promote and improve a higher quality of life not only for the human race, but also for countless other species, as they allow the creation of modern inventions. Anything made of matter, or anything considered a solid, liquid, or gas, is made of chemicals; This means that almost everything a person uses throughout the day is made up of chemicals. Chemicals are used as a basic function of everyday life; they are combined to create many commonly used substances – from the water you drink to the gasoline that powers an automobile.

Water, composed of hydrogen and oxygen, is the most common chemical formula in the world.

Just 100 years ago, many of the chemicals used today did not exist, at least not in a known form. This includes the chemicals needed to make things like modern medicines and cleaning products. In addition to the chemicals already used in the modern world, more chemicals are emerging every day.

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Combining Chemicals

To produce chemical compounds, it is first necessary to arrive at a chemical formula. This formula is just a list of atoms that includes the types of atoms and the number of those specific atoms needed to form a molecule of the substance in question. Typically, this is done by listing the atom type first, followed by the number of atoms needed for that specific compound.

For example, consider one of the most common chemical formulas known in the world, H 2 O. It is two hydrogen atoms combined with an oxygen atom. The result is one of the most basic and life-sustaining chemicals known to mankind – water.

Chemists are responsible for understanding how different chemicals react with each other.

The order of the elements in the formula is usually determined by the Hill system, which states that all carbon atoms will be listed first, hydrogen atoms second, and then all other atoms remaining in alphabetical order. The exception to this is ionic compounds, which will always list the positively charged ion first. This is the case with NaCl, the salt formula.

Side effects

Chemicals have specific molecular compositions.

However, while a chemical can be a good thing, certain types of chemicals can also have negative effects on people and the environment. For example, some chemicals can pose serious risks if ingested, some chemicals can cause cancer, and some chemicals are known to be hazardous to the atmosphere. Many websites and books are dedicated to educating the public about the potentially harmful side effects that can arise from chemicals.

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Chemists, or those who work with chemicals, are charged with understanding how different chemicals react with each other. Without this knowledge, it is very possible that experiments with certain chemicals could lead to catastrophic results.


Chemicals are used to create new drugs.

The study of chemical substances is called chemistry. Often, the most basic forms of chemistry classes begin in high school and continue in all institutions of higher learning. Those in need of chemistry training include doctors, pharmaceutical researchers, and even food and synthetic food developers.

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