Silver Carbonate - Ag2CO3

What is Silver carbonate?

Silver carbonate is an unstable chemical compound with the chemical formula Ag2CO3. Silver carbonate on celite is also called as Fetizon’s reagent. It is obtained by precipitation of solution of silver nitrate by an alkaline carbonate is white in colour and becomes yellow when the soluble salts are washed. It is sensitive to light, when it is exposed to light it changes its colour.

IUPAC name – Disilver carbonate

Ag2CO3 Silver carbonate
Density 6.08 g/cm³
Molecular Weight/ Molar Mass 275.7453 g/mol
Boiling Point 553.2 °C
Melting Point 218 °C
Chemical Formula Ag2CO3

Silver Carbonate Structure – Ag2CO3

Silver Carbonate Ag2CO3 1

Physical Properties of Silver Carbonate – Ag2CO3

Odour Odourless
Appearance Pale yellow crystals
Hydrogen Bond Acceptor 3
Solubility Very little solubility in water

Chemical Properties of Silver Carbonate – Ag2CO3

    • Like other carbonates, silver carbonate undergos decomposition reaction forming elemental silver, carbon dioxide, and oxygen.

Ag2CO3 → Ag2O + CO2

2Ag2O → 4 Ag + O2

    • Nitric acid dissolves silver carbonate forming silver nitrate, water, and carbon dioxide.

Ag2CO3 + 2(HNO3) → 2(AgNO3) + H2O + CO2

Uses of Silver Carbonate – Ag2CO3

  • Ag2CO3 supported on celite is known as Fetizon’s reagent (silver carbonate on celite) which is used for the oxidation of primary and secondary alcohols to give aldehydes and ketones, respectively.
  • Used as a reagent in organic synthesis reaction such asw Koenigs-Knorr reaction.
  • Used as a base in Wittig reaction.


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