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Silver Chloride Formula – Structure, Properties, Uses, Sample Questions

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  • Last Updated : 06 Apr, 2022
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Silver chloride, abbreviated as AgCl, is a chemical compound. This white crystalline substance is well recognised for its inability to dissolve in water. Natural sources of AgCl include the mineral chlorargyrite. Because the silver chloride is divided up into silver and chlorine, the silver chloride in the test tube quickly turns purplish, especially in a sunny environment. When sodium chloride is added to a silver nitrate solution, a white silver chloride precipitate appears. Silver chloride is a well-known salt stain used to provide amber colour to the glass.

What is Silver chloride?

The Silver Chloride formula is a crystalline solid white. It is insoluble in water, alcohol, and dilute acids. It dissolves easily in ammonia, sulfuric acid, alkali cyanide, hydrochloric acid, and potassium bromide solution. 

It occurs naturally as a mineral, such as chlorargyrite. It may be made commercially by homogenising aqueous solutions of sodium chloride and silver nitrate. It is an inorganic photosensitive substance that is commonly used in photography.

It has a molecular weight of 143.32 grams/mol and is a crystalline white solid. This solid salt has a density of 5.56 gm/cm3. This solid has a melting point of 455 °C. This salt has a boiling point of 1547 °C. Silver chloride is a prime example of a salt that cannot dissolve in water. It also cannot be dissolved in dilute acids or alcohols. Ammonia, alkali cyanides, potassium bromide, sulfuric acid, and hydrochloric acid are used to render it soluble.

Nature of Silver chloride

According to its chemical name, AgCl is very corrosive to many metals located above silver in the electrochemical series. It is also harmful to the environment. When it comes into contact with the skin, eyes, or respiratory system, it produces irritation. It is also light sensitive and is utilised in the development of photographic films.

Structure of Silver chloride

The solid has the fcc NaCl structure, with each Ag+ ion surrounded by an octahedron of six chloride ligands. AgBr and AGF crystallise in the same way. Crystallography, on the other hand, is influenced by crystallisation circumstances, especially the concentration of free silver ions.

Structure of Silver chloride

Preparation of Silver chloride

Silver chloride is unique in that, unlike most chloride salts, it is extremely insoluble. It is easily produced through metathesis, which involves mixing a soluble aqueous solution of silver nitrate with a soluble chloride salt, such as sodium chloride or cobalt(II) chloride. The silver chloride that produces will instantly precipitate.

AgNO3 + NaCl → AgCl + NaNO3

2AgNO3 + CoCl2 → 2AgCl + Co(NO3)2

Properties of Silver chloride

Physical Properties

  1. It comes in the form of a white powder.
  2. It has no odour.
  3. The vapour pressure is 670/1Pa.
  4. It’s not soluble in water.

Chemical Properties

  • In the presence of sunlight, silver chloride decomposes to generate silver and chlorine. The following is the chemical reaction.

2AgCl → 2Ag + Cl2

  • When silver chloride combines with a base, such as ammonia, it forms a complex molecule known as silver diamine ion and chloride ion.

AgCl + 2NH3 → [Ag(NH3)2]+ + Cl

Uses of Silver Chloride

  1. The most efficient type of water-activated battery employs magnesium as an anode and silver chloride as a positive electrode.
  2. It’s used in mirror electroplating and polishing, as well as alloy manufacturing.
  3. As an antidote, it interacts with the poison to form an innocuous chemical molecule.
  4. Silver salts are utilised in photographic films and are used in pharmaceuticals.
  5. Because of its limited solubility, silver chloride is a helpful additive to ceramic glazes for the development of “Inglaze lustre.”
  6. Because it reacts with photons to form a latent picture via photoreduction, it is used to make photographic paper.

Sample Questions

Question 1: What are the uses of silver chloride?

Answer: 

AgCl has antibacterial and disinfecting effects, and it is also used to treat mercury poisoning. This chemical is used in antimicrobials, wound healing products, personal deodorants, water treatment, and antidotes. Silver chloride is non-toxic at low concentrations and is utilised in medicinal and disinfection applications.

Question 2: How can silver chloride be synthesized?

Answer: 

Silver chloride is easily made by mixing aqueous silver nitrate and sodium chloride solutions. Silver nitrate can also be made by reacting it with cobalt(II) chloride. This precipitate is formed when silver nitrate is converted to soluble chloride ions and is not unique to cobalt.

Question 3: What are the health hazards of silver chloride?

Answer: 

This chemical, if consumed, can cause intestinal pain. Ingestion of soluble silver salts can cause argyria, which is characterised by permanent blue-grey skin pigmentation, mucous membranes, and eyes. Silver compounds can cause stomach pain, stiffness, convulsions, and shock if consumed.

Question 4: Write the Health Hazards of Silver Chloride.

Answer: 

Silver chloride can induce stomach pain, skin discoloration, argyria, convulsions, and a variety of other health problems.

Question 5: What is the nature of AgCl?

Answer:

According to its chemical name, AgCl is very corrosive to many metals located above silver in the electrochemical series. It is also harmful to the environment. When it comes into contact with the skin, eyes, or respiratory system, it produces irritation. It is also light sensitive and is utilised in the development of photographic films.

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