Dan Brown - Digital Fortress book

Mark H. Wood mwood at IUPUI.Edu
Fri Jan 16 14:21:27 CET 2009

[Freon decomposition products include phosgene]

Well, it's a tangled mess.  There are many different chemicals which
have been sold under the Freon name.  Mr. Brown may have confused any
of these with Halon, another large family of fluorocarbons which
*have* been used for fire suppression, including data centers.  They
all seem to be on the way out, due to the ozone-depleting properties
of halogens in the upper atmosphere.  I haven't examined all of the
Halons, but I don't recall seeing any chlorinated ones, and without
chlorine you can't make phosgene.

I'd sometimes wondered about the phosgene link, and finally looked it
up.  Its name has got nothing to do with phosphorus (which isn't used
in any of these chemicals), but to the use of light to power the
reaction in which it was first synthesized.  So says Wikipedia, anyway.

Mark H. Wood, Lead System Programmer   mwood at IUPUI.Edu
Friends don't let friends publish revisable-form documents.
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