Stuctures of Interhalogen Compounds And Oxides & Oxoacids of Halogens

By Rajat Shukla |Updated : August 1st, 2017

Interhalogen Compounds

When two different halogens react with each other, inter-halogen compounds are formed. They can be assigned general compositions as XX’, XX’3, XX’5 and XX’7 where X is halogen of larger size and X’ of smaller size and X is more electro-positive than X’. Iodine (VII) fluoride should have maximum number of atoms as the ratio of radii between I and F should be maximum. That is why its formula is IF7 (having maximum number of atoms).


The inter-halogen compounds can be prepared by the direct combination or by the action of halogen on lower inter-halogen compounds. The product formed depends upon some specific conditions, For e.g.,



  • They are covalent compounds.
  • They are more reactive than the constituent halogens. It is because A-X bond is relatively weaker than X-X bond.
  • They are very good oxidising agents.
  • Chlorofluoro hydrocarbons are known as Freons and are used as refrigerants. For e.g., Freon-11 is CCl3F, Freon-12 is CCl2F2.

Bleaching powder

Also called calcium chlorohypochlorite because it is considered as a mixed salt of hydrochloric acid and hypochlorous acid. It is represented as:



It is manufactured by the action of chlorine on dry slaked lime, Ca(OH)2 at 40oC.


According to the view proposed by Clifford, bleaching powder is a mixture of calcium hypochlorite and basic calcium chloride.

The manufacture of bleaching powder is carried out in Backmann's plant as follows



  1. It is a pale yellow powder. It has strong smell of chlorine. It is soluble in water but a clear solution is never formed.
  2. On long standing it undergoes auto-oxidation.
  3. On account of the formation of nascent oxygen, it shows oxidising and bleaching properties.
  4. It loses its chlorine by the action of dilute acids (in excess).

The amount of chlorine obtained from a sample of bleaching powder by treatment with excess of dilute acids or carbon dioxide is called available chlorine. A good sample of bleaching powder contains 35 38% available chlorine.

Uses of Bleacing Powder

It is used

  1. as a disinfectant and germicide especially in the sterilization of drinking water.
  2. mainly as bleaching agent for cotton, linen and wood pulp.

However, delicate articles like straw, silk, ivory, etc., are not bleached by bleaching powder.


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