Environmental Literacy Council: Chlorine

Environmental Literacy Council: Chlorine. ‘Represented by the symbol Cl, chlorine has an atomic number of 17 and an atomic weight of 35.435. Like all halogens, chlorine forms a negative ion, receiving one electron into its outermost shell to acquire the highly stable electronic configuration of a noble gas. The naturally occurring isotopes of chlorine are 35 and 37. Because it is highly reactive, chlorine is found in nature only in compound form, primarily in salts. The greenish yellow diatomic gas has a noxious odor and is poisonous to humans if inhaled even in small quantities. Chlorine was used as a poison gas in the trenches of Europe during World War I.’



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