• Thermodynamic and Kinetic Aspects of the Stability of Sir P. C. Ray’s Mercurous Nitrite Compound

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    • Keywords


      Mercurous nitrite, P. C. Ray, dis-proportionation, redox decompo-sition, overpotential, kinetic stabil-ity.

    • Abstract


      Different thermodynamic and kinetic aspects of the stability of mercurous nitrite discovered accidentally in 1896 by P. C. Ray’s group have been critically analysed in this review arti-cle. It has been concluded that mercurous nitrite is thermody-namically unstable but it gains the kinetic stability which may originate from the overpotential factor in the gas evolution in its redox decomposition. It may also arise from strengthen-ing the HgI–HgI bond which undergoes cleavage at the rate determining step (rds) in the disproportionation of Hg22+ orits oxidation by the one-electron oxidant like NO2−. TheHgI–HgI bond is strengthened through the formation of the rela-tively weaker HgI–O bond (i.e. nitrito linkage) compared to the HgI–N bond (i.e. nitro linkage) in mercurous nitrite.

    • Author Affiliations


      Asim K Das1

      1. Department of Chemistry Visva Bharati University Santiniketan 731 235
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