Interaction | Reaction | Process     Data Page

Chlorine dissolves in water to give chlorine water, an aqueous solution of hydrated chlorine, Cl2(aq), which is pale green in colour and hypochlorous acid which, like carbonic acid, H2CO3, is unstable and is only available as a dilute solution or as a salt and HCl(aq).

The reaction is a disproportionation because chlorine goes from oxidation state 0 in Cl2 to +1 in HOCl and to 1 in HCl.

Chlorine is added to polluted water where the hypochlorous acid (actually, the hypochlorite ion) acts as a sterilisation agent. The "breakpoint" concentration of free chlorine, which gives effective sterilisation, is 0.2 to 0.5 mg/mL.

W. Büchner, R. Schliebs, G. Winter, K.H. Büchel, Industrial Inorganic Chemistry, VCH, 1989

Reactant Page Go To Go To
Chlorine     Reactions Using    Reactions Forming
Water     Reactions Using    Reactions Forming
Hypochlorous acid     Reactions Using    Reactions Forming
Hydrogen chloride     Reactions Using    Reactions Forming

Interaction, Reaction, Process defined as:
British A-Level Chemistry: AS
Industrial Process: Inorganic
Reduction: Of Substrate By Reagent

© Mark R. Leach 1999 –

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