Barium nitrate

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Barium nitrate
Dusicnan barnaty.JPG
Barium nitrate.png
Other names
Barium dinitrate,
, barium salt
3D model (JSmol)
ECHA InfoCard 100.030.006 OOjs UI icon edit-ltr-progressive.svg
EC Number
  • 233-020-5
PubChem CID
RTECS number
  • CQ9625000
UN number 1446
  • InChI=1S/Ba.2NO3/c;2*2-1(3)4/q+2;2*-1 Yes check.svgY
  • InChI=1/Ba.2NO2/c;2*2-1(3)4/q+2;2*-1
  • [Ba+2].[O-][N+]([O-])=O.[O-][N+]([O-])=O
Molar mass 261.337 g/mol
Appearancewhite, lustrous crystals
Odor odorless
Density 3.24 g/cm3
Melting point 592 °C (1,098 °F; 865 K) (decomposes)
4.95 g/100 mL (0 °C)
10.5 g/100 mL (25 °C)
34.4 g/100 mL (100 °C)
Solubility slightly soluble in acetone, and ethanol [1]
-66.5·10−6 cm3/mol
GHS labelling:
GHS-pictogram-rondflam.svg GHS-pictogram-skull.svg GHS-pictogram-exclam.svg
H272, H301, H302, H319, H332
P210, P220, P221, P261, P264, P270, P271, P280, P301+P310, P301+P312, P304+P312, P304+P340, P305+P351+P338, P312, P321, P330, P337+P313, P370+P378, P405, P501
NFPA 704 (fire diamond)
Flash point noncombustible [2]
Lethal dose or concentration (LD, LC):
355 mg/kg (oral, rat)[ citation needed ]
187 mg/kg (rat, oral) [3]
79 mg Ba/kg (rabbit, oral)
421 mg Ba/kg (dog, oral) [3]
NIOSH (US health exposure limits):
PEL (Permissible)
TWA 0.5 mg/m3 [2]
REL (Recommended)
TWA 0.5 mg/m3 [2]
IDLH (Immediate danger)
50 mg/m3 [2]
Supplementary data page
Barium nitrate (data page)
Except where otherwise noted, data are given for materials in their standard state (at 25 °C [77 °F], 100 kPa).
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Barium nitrate is the inorganic compound with the chemical formula Ba(NO3)2. It, like most barium salts, is colorless, toxic, and water-soluble. It burns with a green flame and is an oxidizer; the compound is commonly used in pyrotechnics. [4]


Manufacture, occurrence, and reactions

Barium nitrate is manufactured by two processes that start with the main source material for barium, the carbonate. The first involves dissolving barium carbonate in nitric acid, allowing any iron impurities to precipitate, then filtered, evaporated, and crystallized. The second requires combining barium sulfide with nitric acid. [4]

It occurs naturally as the very rare mineral nitrobarite. [5] [6]

At elevated temperatures, barium nitrate decomposes to barium oxide:

2Ba(NO3)2 → 2BaO + 4NO2 + O2


Barium nitrate is used in the production of BaO-containing materials.


Although no longer produced, Baratol is an explosive composed of barium nitrate, TNT and binder; the high density of barium nitrate results in baratol being quite dense as well. Barium nitrate mixed with aluminium powder, a formula for flash powder, is highly explosive. It is mixed with thermite to form Thermate-TH3, used in military thermite grenades. Barium nitrate was also a primary ingredient in the "SR 365" incendiary charge used by the British in the De Wilde incendiary ammunition with which they armed their interceptor fighters, such as the Hawker Hurricane and Supermarine Spitfire, during the Battle of Britain. [7] It is also used in the manufacturing process of barium oxide, the vacuum tube industry and for green fire in pyrotechnics.


Like all soluble barium compounds, barium nitrate is toxic by ingestion or inhalation. [8]

Solutions of sulfate salts such as Epsom salts or sodium sulfate may be given as first aid for barium poisoning, as they precipitate the barium as the insoluble (and non-toxic) barium sulfate.

Inhalation may also cause irritation to the respiratory tract.

While skin or eye contact is less harmful than ingestion or inhalation, it can still result in irritation, itching, redness, and pain.

The Occupational Safety and Health Administration and the National Institute for Occupational Safety and Health have set occupational exposure limits at 0.5 mg/m3 over an eight-hour time-weighted average. [9]

Related Research Articles

Barium Chemical element, symbol Ba and atomic number 56

Barium is a chemical element with the symbol Ba and atomic number 56. It is the fifth element in group 2 and is a soft, silvery alkaline earth metal. Because of its high chemical reactivity, barium is never found in nature as a free element.

In chemistry, a salt is a chemical compound consisting of an ionic assembly of positively charged cations and negatively charged anions, which results in a compound with no net electric charge. A common example is table salt, with positively charged sodium ions and negatively charged chloride ions.

Silver nitrate Chemical compound

Silver nitrate is an inorganic compound with chemical formula AgNO
. This salt is a versatile precursor to many other silver compounds, such as those used in photography. It is far less sensitive to light than the halides. It was once called lunar caustic because silver was called luna by ancient alchemists who associated silver with the moon. In solid silver nitrate, the silver ions are three-coordinated in a trigonal planar arrangement.

Lead(II) nitrate is an inorganic compound with the chemical formula Pb(NO3)2. It commonly occurs as a colourless crystal or white powder and, unlike most other lead(II) salts, is soluble in water.

Barium hydroxide Chemical compound

Barium hydroxide is a chemical compound with the chemical formula Ba(OH)2. The monohydrate (x = 1), known as baryta or baryta-water, is one of the principal compounds of barium. This white granular monohydrate is the usual commercial form.

Barium sulfate Inorganic compound

Barium sulfate (or sulphate) is the inorganic compound with the chemical formula BaSO4. It is a white crystalline solid that is odorless and insoluble in water. It occurs as the mineral barite, which is the main commercial source of barium and materials prepared from it. The white opaque appearance and its high density are exploited in its main applications.

Barium oxide Chemical compound

Barium oxide, also known as baria, is a white hygroscopic non-flammable compound with the formula BaO. It has a cubic structure and is used in cathode ray tubes, crown glass, and catalysts. It is harmful to human skin and if swallowed in large quantity causes irritation. Excessive quantities of barium oxide may lead to death.

Barium carbonate Chemical compound

Barium carbonate is the inorganic compound with the formula BaCO3. Like most alkaline earth metal carbonates, it is a white salt that is poorly soluble in water. It occurs as the mineral known as witherite. In a commercial sense, it is one of the most important barium compounds.

Barium chloride Chemical compound

Barium chloride is an inorganic compound with the formula BaCl2. It is one of the most common water-soluble salts of barium. Like most other water-soluble barium salts, it is white, highly toxic, and imparts a yellow-green coloration to a flame. It is also hygroscopic, converting first to the dihydrate BaCl2(H2O)2. It has limited use in the laboratory and industry.

Uranyl nitrate Chemical compound

Uranyl nitrate is a water-soluble yellow uranium salt with the formula UO2(NO3)2 · n H2O. The hexa-, tri-, and dihydrates are known. The compound is mainly of interest because it is an intermediate in the preparation of nuclear fuels.

Thallium(I) sulfate Chemical compound

Thallium(I) sulfate (Tl2SO4) or thallous sulfate is the sulfate salt of thallium in the common +1 oxidation state, as indicated by the Roman numeral I. It is often referred to as simply thallium sulfate.

Cadmium fluoride Chemical compound

Cadmium fluoride (CdF2) is a mostly water-insoluble source of cadmium used in oxygen-sensitive applications, such as the production of metallic alloys. In extremely low concentrations (ppm), this and other fluoride compounds are used in limited medical treatment protocols. Fluoride compounds also have significant uses in synthetic organic chemistry. The standard enthalpy has been found to be -167.39 kcal. mole−1 and the Gibbs energy of formation has been found to be -155.4 kcal. mole−1, and the heat of sublimation was determined to be 76 kcal. mole−1.

Aluminium nitrate Chemical compound

Aluminium nitrate is a white, water-soluble salt of aluminium and nitric acid, most commonly existing as the crystalline hydrate, aluminium nitrate nonahydrate, Al(NO3)3·9H2O.

Cadmium nitrate Chemical compound

Cadmium nitrate describes any of the related members of a family of inorganic compounds with the general formula , the most commonly encountered form being the tetrahydrate. The anhydrous form is volatile, but the others are colourless crystalline solids that are deliquescent, tending to absorb enough moisture from the air to form an aqueous solution. Like other cadmium compounds, cadmium nitrate is known to be carcinogenic.

Strontium carbonate Chemical compound

Strontium carbonate (SrCO3) is the carbonate salt of strontium that has the appearance of a white or grey powder. It occurs in nature as the mineral strontianite.

Barium chlorate Chemical compound

Barium chlorate, Ba(ClO3)2, is the barium salt of chloric acid. It is a white crystalline solid, and like all soluble barium compounds, irritant and toxic. It is sometimes used in pyrotechnics to produce a green color. It also finds use in the production of chloric acid.

Barium bromide Chemical compound

Barium bromide is the chemical compound with the formula BaBr2. Like barium chloride, it dissolves well in water and is toxic.

Dinitro-<i>ortho</i>-cresol Chemical compound

Dinitro-ortho-cresol (DNOC) is an organic compound with the structural formula CH3C6H2(NO2)2OH. It is a yellow solid that is only slightly soluble in water. DNOC and some related derivatives have been used as herbicides.

Antimony(III) sulfate Chemical compound

Antimony sulfate, Sb2(SO4)3, is a hygroscopic salt formed by reacting antimony or its compounds with hot sulfuric acid. It is used in doping of semiconductors and in the production of explosives and fireworks.

Actinide chemistry Branch of nuclear chemistry

Actinide chemistry is one of the main branches of nuclear chemistry that investigates the processes and molecular systems of the actinides. The actinides derive their name from the group 3 element actinium. The informal chemical symbol An is used in general discussions of actinide chemistry to refer to any actinide. All but one of the actinides are f-block elements, corresponding to the filling of the 5f electron shell; lawrencium, a d-block element, is also generally considered an actinide. In comparison with the lanthanides, also mostly f-block elements, the actinides show much more variable valence. The actinide series encompasses the 15 metallic chemical elements with atomic numbers from 89 to 103, actinium through lawrencium.


  1. John Rumble (June 18, 2018). CRC Handbook of Chemistry and Physics (99th ed.). CRC Press. pp. 4–41. ISBN   978-1138561632.
  2. 1 2 3 4 NIOSH Pocket Guide to Chemical Hazards. "#0046". National Institute for Occupational Safety and Health (NIOSH).
  3. 1 2 "Barium (soluble compounds, as Ba)". Immediately Dangerous to Life or Health Concentrations (IDLH). National Institute for Occupational Safety and Health (NIOSH).
  4. 1 2 Kresse, Robert; Baudis, Ulrich; Jäger, Paul; Riechers, H. Hermann; Wagner, Heinz; Winkler, Jocher; Wolf, Hans Uwe (2007). "Barium and Barium Compounds". In Ullman, Franz (ed.). Ullmann's Encyclopedia of Industrial Chemistry. Wiley-VCH. doi:10.1002/14356007.a03_325.pub2. ISBN   978-3527306732.
  5. Mindat,
  6. "List of Minerals". 21 March 2011.
  7. Williams, Anthony G; Emmanuel Gustin (2004). "THE BATTLE OF BRITAIN: ARMAMENT OF THE COMPETING FIGHTERS". Flying Guns: World War 2. Crowood Press. Archived from the original on 5 January 2013. Retrieved 23 December 2012. The B. Mk VI 'De Wilde' incendiary (named after the original Belgian inventor but in fact completely redesigned by Major Dixon), which contained 0.5 grams of SR 365 (a composition including barium nitrate which ignited on impact with the target) was twice as effective as these, scoring one in five.
  8. Barium Nitrate
  9. CDC - NIOSH Pocket Guide to Chemical Hazards