Arsenic(III) chloride, Arsenous trichloride, Butter of arsenic, de Valagin's solution
3D model (JSmol)
|Molar mass||181.28 g/mol|
|Density||2.163 g/cm3, liquid|
|Melting point||−16.2 °C (2.8 °F; 256.9 K)|
|Boiling point||130.2 °C (266.4 °F; 403.3 K)|
|Solubility||soluble in alcohol, ether, HCl, HBr|
Refractive index (nD)
|Viscosity||9.77 x 10−6 Pa s|
|Very Toxic (T+)|
Dangerous for the environment (N)
|R-phrases (outdated)||R23/25, R50/53|
|S-phrases (outdated)||(S1/2), S20/21, S28, S45, S60, S61|
|Lethal dose or concentration (LD, LC):|
LD50 (median dose)
LCLo (lowest published)
|100 mg/m3 (cat, 1 hr)|
200 mg/m3 (cat, 20 min)
338 ppm (rat, 10 min)
|US health exposure limits (NIOSH):|
|[1910.1018] TWA 0.010 mg/m3|
|Ca C 0.002 mg/m3 [15-minute]|
IDLH (Immediate danger)
|Ca [5 mg/m3 (as As)]|
|Arsenic trioxide, Arsenic trifluoride|
Except where otherwise noted, data are given for materials in their standard state (at 25 °C [77 °F], 100 kPa).
|what is ?)(|
Arsenic trichloride is an inorganic compound with the formula AsCl3, also known as arsenous chloride or butter of arsenic. This poisonous oil is colourless, although impure samples may appear yellow. It is an intermediate in the manufacture of organoarsenic compounds.
AsCl3 is a pyramidal molecule with C3v symmetry. The As-Cl bond is 2.161 Å and the angle Cl-As-Cl is 98° 25'±30. AsCl3 has four normal modes of vibration: ν1(A1) 416, ν2(A1) 192, ν3 393, and ν4(E) 152 cm−1. Arsenic trichloride contains predominantly covalent bonds, which explains its low melting point.
- As2O3 + 6 HCl → 2 AsCl3 + 3 H2O
It can also be prepared by chlorination of arsenic at 80–85 °C, but this method requires elemental arsenic.
- 2 As + 3 Cl2 → 2 AsCl3
Arsenic trichloride can also be prepared by the reaction of arsenic oxide and sulfur monochloride. This method requires simple apparatus and proceeds efficiently:
- 2 As2O3 + 6 S2Cl2 → 4 AsCl3 + 3 SO2 + 9 S
- AsCl3 + 3 H2O → As(OH)3 + 3 HCl
Although AsCl3 is less moisture sensitive than PCl3, it still fumes in moist air.
AsCl3 undergoes redistribution upon treatment with As2O3 to give the inorganic polymer AsOCl. With chloride sources, AsCl3, forms salts containing the anion [AsCl4]−. Reaction with potassium bromide and potassium iodide give arsenic tribromide and arsenic triiodide, respectively.
- AsCl3 + 6 Na + → + 6 NaCl
Arsenic compounds are highly toxic, and AsCl3 especially so because of its volatility and solubility.
It is classified as an extremely hazardous substance in the United States as defined in Section 302 of the U.S. Emergency Planning and Community Right-to-Know Act (42 U.S.C. 11002), and is subject to strict reporting requirements by facilities which produce, store, or use it in significant quantities.
- "NIOSH Pocket Guide to Chemical Hazards #0038". National Institute for Occupational Safety and Health (NIOSH).
- "Arsenic (inorganic compounds, as As)". Immediately Dangerous to Life and Health Concentrations (IDLH). National Institute for Occupational Safety and Health (NIOSH).
- Sabina C. Grund, Kunibert Hanusch, Hans Uwe Wolf "Arsenic and Arsenic Compounds" in Ullmann's Encyclopedia of Industrial Chemistry, VCH-Wiley, 2008, Weinheim.doi:10.1002/14356007.a03_113.pub2
- P. Kisliuk; C. H. Townes. "The Microwave Spectra and Molecular Structure of Phosphorus and Arsenic Trichloride". J. Chem. Phys. 1950, 18.
- Jean Galy; Renee Enjalbertl Pierre Lecante; Andrzej Burian "AsCl3: From the crystalline to the liquid state. XRD (176< T (K) < 250) and WAXS (295K) studies" Inorg. Chem 2002, volume 41, pp. 693–698.doi:10.1021/ic0102788
- Klapoetke, Thomas M. "The vibrational spectrum of arsenic trichloride" Main Group Metal Chemistry 1997, volume 20, pp. 81–83.
- R. C. Smith, "Manufacture of Arsenic trichloride" The Journal of Industrial and Engineering Chemistry 1919, volume 11, pp. 109–110. doi:10.1021/ie50110a009
- Holleman, A. F.; Wiberg, E. Inorganic Chemistry Academic Press: San Diego, 2001. ISBN 0-12-352651-5.
- Shriner, R. L.; Wolf, C. N. (1963). "Tetraphenylarsonium Chloride Hydrochloride". Organic Syntheses.; Collective Volume, 4, p. 910. Describes the preparation of As(C6H5)3.
- "40 C.F.R.: Appendix A to Part 355—The List of Extremely Hazardous Substances and Their Threshold Planning Quantities" (PDF) (July 1, 2008 ed.). Government Printing Office. Retrieved October 29, 2011.