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RHYS LEWIS, AHS, DECD, UNISA / SCIENCE PHOTO LIBRARY RHYS LEWIS, AHS, DECD, UNISA / SCIENCE PHOTO LIBRARY
Carbon monoxide molecule, animation. Carbon monoxide (CO) is a linear diatomic molecule that consists of a carbon atom (grey sphere) joined to an oxygen atom (red sphere) by a triple bond. Carbon monoxide in high concentrations is toxic to humans, and is produced when carbon compounds are burnt in oxygen and are unable to bond with additional oxygen atoms to form carbon dioxide (CO2). Machines using internal combustion engines can produce carbon monoxide when there is insufficient oxygen in the surrounding environment, as can malfunctioning household devices that burn fuel, such as furnaces, gas heaters or water heaters.
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