Kerosene is thin clear liquid oil derived from petroleum, coal tar, or oil-bearing shale. Kerosene is widely used to power jet engines of aircraft and some rocket engines, but is also commonly used as a cooking and lighting fuel, heaters, and lamps, and as a solvent.
Kerosene is used to fuel smaller-horsepower outboard motors built by Yamaha Motors, Suzuki Marine, and Tohatsu. Primarily used on small fishing craft, these are dual-fuel engines that start on gasoline and then transition to kerosene once the engine reaches optimum operating temperature.
Kerosene is an excellent solvent of many other compounds. It dissolves camphor, iodine, phosphorus, resin, sulfur, and wax. It is used as a thinner for paints and other materials.
Kerosene lamps are widely used for lighting in rural areas of Asia and Africa where electrical distribution is not available or too costly for widespread use. Deodorized kerosene is used as a solvent in some types of insecticides and weed killers.
Toxicity: Ingestion of kerosene is harmful or fatal. Kerosene should never be used to get rid of hair lice as it can cause burns and serious illness. A kerosene shampoo can even be fatal if fumes are inhaled.
Entertainment: Kerosene is often used in the entertainment industry for fire performances, such as fire breathing, fire juggling, and fire dancing.