Hexadecane (also called cetane) is an alkane hydrocarbon with the chemical formula C16H34. Hexadecane consists of a chain of 16 carbon atoms, with three hydrogen atoms bonded to the two end carbon atoms, and two hydrogens bonded to each of the 14 other carbon atoms. It has 10,359 constitutional isomers.
Cetane is often used as a short-hand for cetane number, a measure of the detonation of diesel fuel. Cetane ignites very easily under compression; for this reason, it is assigned a cetane number of 100, and serves as a reference for other fuel mixtures.