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Ozone - Gas Profile



Ozone (O3) is a naturally occurring, odourless, colourless gas composed of three molecules of oxygen (O3). It happens in the stratosphere above Earth and the troposphere close to the surface. The gas ozone (O3) is odoriferous and invisible, ranging in hue from colourless to blue. Ozone exposure has been linked to various adverse health effects, including headaches, coughing, dry throat, shortness of breath, chest tightness, and fluid buildup in the lungs. Intensified signs and symptoms may result from prolonged exposure. Asthma may develop with long-term exposure. Ozone exposure can be harmful to workers. The dose, length of time, and nature of the work all contribute to the total amount of exposure.


Christian Friedrich Schönbein, a German-Swiss chemist, first identified and isolated Ozone(O3) in 1839. 

  • A single molecule of ozone has three oxygen atoms, whereas a single molecule of oxygen consists of just two atoms.
  • Motor vehicle emissions and the synthesis of natural gas contribute to forming dangerous ground-level ozone.
  • The Environmental Protection Agency warns that exposure to ozone levels of 70 ppb or higher for 8 hours or more can have adverse health effects. 
    They tend to congregate in urban areas when the weather is warm and stable.
  • Using the Greek word for "smell," Ozone, Schönbein gave this gas its name.
  • Negative, ground-level ozone is created when volatile organic compounds combine with nitrogen oxide gases released by vehicles and factories (carbon-containing chemicals that evaporate quickly into the air, such as paint thinners).

Fun Fact – Ozone in the stratosphere absorbs most of the ultraviolet radiation from the Sun. Without ozone, the Sun's intense UV radiation would sterilize the Earth's surface.

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