Properties of Silver Nitrate or Lunar Caustic - QS Study
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Physical Properties Properties of Silver nitrate (AgNO3)

Physical Properties

  1. It is soluble in water.
  2. Its aqueous solution may decompose on exposure to light.


Chemical Properties

  • Action of Heat

On heating AgNO3 decomposes in two stages

2AgNO3 –723 K→ 2AgNO2 + O2  (Silver nitrite)

AgNO2 — 980 K→ Ag + NO2

  • With NaCl

AgNO3 gives white precipitate of AgCl with soluble ionic chlorides.

AgNO3 + NaCl → AgCl↓ + NaNO3

  • Silver nitrate is strongly caustic and oxidizing in nature.
  • With KBr & KI

AgNO3 gives pale yellow precipitate of AgBr with bromides and yellow AgI with iodides.

AgNO3 + KBr → AgBr + KNO3 (Yellow ppt)

AgNO3 + KI → AgI + KNO3 (Yellow ppt)

  • Action with organic compounds

Ammoniacal silver nitrate (Tollen’s reagent) is reduced to silver mirror by compounds like formic acid, formaldehyde or glucose:

2AgNO3 + 2NH4OH → Ag2O + 2NH4NO3 + H2O

Ag2O + HCOOH → 2Ag↓ + H2O + CO2