Have you seen the crystal structure of bleach?

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For over 200 years, humans have used bleach or sodium hypochlorite(NaOCl) as a disinfectant. Available in powder and solution form, it is a common household chemical and has applications in paper and textile industry. Despite this long history and even longer list of uses, its crystal structure has just been determined.

Last month, a paper published in the journal Angewandte Chemie provided the first X-ray single crystal structure of hydrated sodium hypochlorite.

“I think it’s one of those things that was hiding in plain sight, that somehow slipped through the cracks,” said McGill University’s Tomislav Frišcic, who led the work, to Chemical &…

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