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Inorganic ozonides are formed by burning potassium or heavier alkali metals in ozone, or by treating the alkali metal hydroxide with ozone; if potassium is left undisturbed in air for years it accumulates a covering of superoxide and ozonide. They are very sensitive explosives that have to be handled at low temperatures in an atmosphere comprised of an inert gas. Lithium and sodium ozonide are extremely unstable and must be prepared by low-temperature ion exchange starting from CsO3, and the pure solids cannot be isolated.
Organic ozonides are more explosive cousins of the organic peroxides and contain a covalently bonded ozonide group, -O-O-O-. They usually appear in the form of foul-smelling oily liquids. Their main use is in determining the structure of chemical compounds. As intermediates of ozonolysis, they are formed by an addition reaction of ozone and unsaturated compounds, and rapidly decompose to carbonyl compounds - aldehydes, ketones, peroxides.