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What is a chlorite ion?

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Quick Answer

A chlorite ion consists of one chlorine atom covalently bonded to two oxygen atoms. Chlorite ions are also known as chlorine dioxide ions or dioxidochlorate.

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Each chlorite ion has an overall negative charge of -1. Chlorite ions readily react with ions that have a positive charge of +1, such as hydrogen ions, to form ionic compounds such as chlorous acid, or HClO2. Chlorite has the molecular formula ClO2- and has a molecular weight of 67.4518. Chlorite ions are often combined with sodium ions to form sodium chlorite, or NaClO2, which is used as a disinfectant and in some contact lens cleaning solutions.

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