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The oxygen atom is unstable in the atomic form. Oxygen is stable in the diatomic form as O2. The air we breathe today is made up of about 21% oxygen, this makes oxygen one of the most common molecules found in nature today.

Ozone is a triatomic form of oxygen, meaning that the molecule, ozone, is made up of 3 oxygen atoms. Unlike oxygen, ozone is a visible gas with a light blue color at very high concentrations. At low concentrations ozone is colorless. Ozone also has a distinct odor that is noticeable at very low levels and may be associated with a “clean” smell, at higher levels ozone has a very pungent odor. Ozone is an unstable gas that readily decomposes to oxygen naturally. Ozone is also a highly reactive gas that acts as a very strong chemical oxidant.

Chemical Structure of Ozone:


Three molecules of oxygen will recombine to form two molecules of ozone. Two of an ozone molecule’s three atoms are bonded strongly, as in oxygen. The third atom is loosely bonded, making ozone gas 10 times more soluble in water than oxygen. Ozone has 24 protons, 24 neutrons, 24 electrons, and an atomic weight of 48. In

comparison to oxygen, where atoms are linked in a straight line, the ozone molecule is bent at a bond angle of 116.8°, a configuration that makes the ozone molecule more electrically active.

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