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This article is about the European Commission system for numbering chemicals. For the Enzyme Commission number, see EC number.

The European Commission number, or EC number, also known as EC-No and EC#, is the seven-digit code that is assigned to chemical substances that are commercially available within the European Union. This number is assigned by the Commission of the European Community; the EC number is the official number of a substance in the European Union.

The list of substances having an EC number is called the EC Inventory.[1] The EC Inventory includes the substances in the following inventories.

  • European Inventory of Existing Commercial Chemical Substances, EINECS
These are substances, excluding polymers, that were commercially available in the EU from 1 January 1971 to 18 September 1981. These were considered registered registered under Article 8(1) of directive 67/548/EEC
The identifying number of these substances is called the EINECS number.
  • European List of Notified Chemical Substances, ELINCS
These are substances that became commercially available after 18 September 1981.
The identifying number of these substances is called the ELINCS number.
  • The "No-longer Polymers" list, NLP-list
The definition of polymers was changed in April, 1992[2] with the result that substances previously considered to be polymers were no longer excluded from regulation. Consequently, a list, called the NLP-list, was made of such substances that were commercially available between after 18 September 1981 and 31 October 1993.[3]
The identifying number of these substances is called the NLP number.

After the pre-registration phase of REACH, ECHA has additionally assigned list numbers in the 6xx-xxx-x series to substances pre-registered with a CAS number. The 9xx-xxx-x series has been allocated to pre-registered reaction masses of more than one substance or which were pre-registered with only a chemical name as an identifier. You can see these in the ECHA List of pre-registered substances.

For a substance in one of these lists, its identifying number, which will be either an EINECS number, an ELINCS number, or an NLP number, is also its EC number. The format of the identifying numbers in all three lists is the same; also, the numbers in these lists do not overlap.

The EC number is made up of seven digits according to the pattern xxx-xxx-x.[4]

  • EINECS numbers start with number 200-001-8 (formaldehyde). There are currently 100,204 entries.[5]
  • ELINCS numbers start with 400-010-9 (trade name: "indosol yellow SF-2RL"). There are currently 4,381 entries.
  • NLP numbers start with 500-001-0 ("2-methylpropene, trimers"). There are currently 703 entries.

The EC Number may be written in a general form as: NNN-NNN-R, where R is a check digit and N represents integers. The check digit is calculated using the ISBN method. According to this method, the check digit is the remainder of the following sum after division by 11:

\frac{N_1 + 2\!\times\!N_2 + 3\!\times\!N_3 + 4\!\times\!N_4 + 5\!\times\!N_5 + 6\!\times\!N_6}{11} = Q + \frac{R}{11}

If the remainder R is equal to 10, that combination of digits is not used for an EC number.

To illustrate, the EC number of dexamethasone is 200-003-9. N1 is 2, N2 through N5 are 0, and N6 is 3.

\frac{2 + 2\!\times\!0 + 3\!\times\!0 + 4\!\times\!0 + 5\!\times\!0 + 6\!\times\!3}{11} = \frac{20}{11} = 1 + \frac{9}{11}

The remainder is 9, which is the check digit.

The substance to which an EC number refers (and vice versa) can be looked up on the official "European Chemical Substances Information System" web site, ESIS.

See also

References

  1. ^ European Chemicals Agency (June 2007). "Guidance for identification and naming of substances under REACH" (pdf). pp. 11. http://guidance.echa.europa.eu/docs/guidance_document/substance_id_en.pdf. Retrieved 2009-01-25.  
  2. ^ "Council Directive 92/32/EEC of 30 April 1992 amending for the seventh time Directive 67/548/EEC on the approximation of the laws, regulations and administrative provisions relating to the classification, packaging and labelling of dangerous substances" (pdf). Official Journal of the European Communities (L 154): 1–29. 05/06/1992. http://eur-lex.europa.eu/LexUriServ/LexUriServ.do?uri=CELEX:31992L0032:EN:HTML. Retrieved 2009-01-25.  
  3. ^ "Regulation (EC) No 1272/2008 of the European Parliament and of the Council of 16 December 2008 on classification, labeling and packaging of substances and mixtures, amending and repealing Directives 67/548/EEC and 1999/45/EC, and amending Regulation (EC) No 1907/2006" (pdf). Official Journal of the European Communities (L 353): 329. December 31, 2008. http://eur-lex.europa.eu/LexUriServ/LexUriServ.do?uri=OJ:L:2008:353:0001:1355:EN:PDF. Retrieved 2009-01-24.  
  4. ^ "Commission Directive 2001/59/EC of 6 August 2001 adapting to technical progress for the 28th time Council Directive 67/548/EEC on the approximation of the laws, regulations and administrative provisions relating to the classification, packaging and labelling of dangerous substances" (pdf). Official Journal of the European Communities (L 225): 4. June 8, 2001. http://ecb.jrc.ec.europa.eu/home.php?CONTENU=/DOCUMENTS/Classification-Labelling/ADOPTED_SUMMARY_RECORDS/. Retrieved 2009-01-24.  
  5. ^ "ESIS (European chemical Substances Information System)". http://ecb.jrc.ec.europa.eu/esis/index.php?PGM=nlp. Retrieved 2009-01-24.  

External links

  • ESIS European Chemical Substances Information System, where EC numbers can be looked up.
  • Ovid Summary of legislation related to EC numbers
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