Blogging a crystal structure a day in 2014


Contributed by

Helen Maynard-Casely

Simple Sunday – Magnesium Chloride

What does it look like?


What is it?

Magnesium chloride is a very simple material, with a lot of uses – from roads to antiseptic to tofu. As you can see from the image of its crystal structure it forms in layers – with the magnesium and chlorine atoms forming octahedra that are joined together. This means there is lots of room for water also to join between the layers and form a magnesium chloride hydrate.

There's lots more on this material in the latest Chemistry World podcast from Brian Clegg that you can listen to here.

Where did the structure come from?

Magnesium chloride is #9009129 in the Crystallography Open Database.

Tags: simple   salt