What is Hydrogen peroxide?
Hydrogen peroxide is a chemical compound with the formula . In its pure form it is a colorless liquid, slightly more viscous than water; however, for safety reasons it is normally used as an aqueous solution. Hydrogen peroxide is the simplest peroxide (a compound with an oxygen-oxygen single bond) and finds use as a strong oxidizer, bleaching agent and disinfectant. Concentrated hydrogen peroxide, or 'high-test peroxide,' is a reactive oxygen species and has been used as a propellant in rocketry.
Hydrogen peroxide is often described as being “water but with one more oxygen atom” a description which can give the incorrect impression that there is a great deal of similarity between the two compounds. Pure hydrogen peroxide will explode if heated to boiling, will cause serious contact burns to the skin and can set materials alight on contact. For these reasons it is usually handled as a dilute solution (household grades are typically 3-6%). Its chemistry is dominated by the nature of its unstable peroxide bond.