Day 17: Interesting Facts About Chlorine
Atomic Symbol: Cl; Atomic Number: 17; Atomic Mass: 35.453
- Earth’s oceans contain a large amount of chlorine (2.6 x 1016 metric tons). If this chlorine were released as a gas, its weight would be 5x greater than Earth’s total current atmosphere.
- Chlorine is used in many cleaning products, disinfecting water, chemical warfare agents, textiles, paper products, dyes, petroleum products, medicines, insecticides, disinfectants, foods, solvents, plastics, and paints.
- The first chain reaction discovered was not a nuclear reaction; it was the chemical chain reaction that occurred when Max Bodenstein observed a mixture of chlorine and hydrogen gases explode when triggered by light.
- More than a few breaths of Chlorine in concentrations of 1000ppm (.1%) will be fatal, and in its liquid form, it can burn your skin.
Image: In August 2002 a hose ruptured at a DPC Enterprises plant near Festus, Missouri. The emergency shutdown valves did not close as designed due to poor maintenance, and the EFV did not close. The only way to stop the release of chlorine from the railcar was to send emergency responders through a four-foot deep yellowish-green fog of chlorine vapor to manually close shutdown valves located on top of the railcar.