Chromyl Fluoride

Chromyl fluoride

Chromyl fluoride
CAS number 7788-96-7
Molecular formula CrO2F2
Molar mass 112 g/mol
Appearance violet crystals
Melting point


Main hazards Oxidant
Yes(what is this?) (verify)
Except where noted otherwise, data are given for materials in their standard state (at 25 °C, 100 kPa)
Infobox references

Chromyl fluoride is an inorganic compound with the formula CrO2F2. It is a violet-red colored crystalline solid that melts to an orange-red liquid.


The liquid and gaseous CrO2F2 have a tetrahedral geometry with C2V symmetry, much like chromyl chloride. Chromyl fluoride crystallizes in the P21/c space group with Z=4. The Cr=O bond lengths are about 157 pm, and the Cr-F bond lengths are 181.7, 186.7, and 209.4pm. Chromium resides in a distorted octahedral position with a coordination number of six. It dimerizes via fluoride bridges in the solid state.


Chromyl fluoride is a strong oxidizing agent capable of converting hydrocarbons to ketones and carboxylic acids. It can also be used as a reagent in the preparation of other chromyl compounds. Like some other fluoride compounds, CrO2F2 reacts with glass and quartz, so silicon-free plastics or metals must be used when handling the compound.

History and preparation

Pure chromyl fluoride was first isolated in 1952 as reported by Engelbrecht and Grosse. It was first observed as red vapor in the early 19th century upon heating a mixture of fluorspar (CaF2), chromates, and sulfuric acid. These red vapors were initially thought to be CrF6, although some chemists assumed a CrO2F2 structure analogous to CrO2Cl2. The first moderately successful synthesis of chromyl fluoride was reported by Fredenhagen who examined the reaction of hydrogen fluoride with alkali chromates. A later attempt saw Wartenberg prepared impure CrO2F2 by treating CrO2Cl2 with elemental fluorine. Another attempt was made by Wiechert, who treated HF with dichromate, yielding impure liquid CrO2F2 at -40 °C.

Engelbrecht and Grosse’s synthesis of CrO2F2, and most successive syntheses, involve treating chromium trioxide (CrO3) with a fluorinating agent:

CrO 3 + 2 HF → CrO 2F 2 + H 2O

The reaction is reversible, as water will readily hydrolyze CrO2F2 back to CrO3. Other methods include treatment with chlorine fluoride, carbonyl fluoride, or some metal hexafluorides:

CrO 3 + 2 ClF → CrO 2F 2 + Cl 2 + O 2
CrO 3 + COF 2 → CrO 2F 2 + CO 2
CrO 3 + MF 6 → CrO 2F 2 + MOF 4 (M = Mo, W)

The last method involving the fluorides of tungsten and molybdenum are reported by Green and Gard to be very simple and effective routes to large quantities of pure CrO2F2. They reported 100% yield when the reactions were conducted at 120°C. As expected from the relative reactivities of MoF6 and WF6, the MoF6 reaction proceeded more readily.


In addition to being to oxidizing hydrocarbons to ketones and carboxylic acids, CrO2F2 participates in a variety of other reactions as reported by Brown, Green, and Gard. Chromyl Fluoride can exchange fluorine atoms with metal oxides.

CrO 2F 2 + MO → MF 2 + CrO 3

Chromyl fluoride will also convert the oxides of boron and silicon to the fluorides.

Chromyl fluoride reacts with alkali and alkaline earth metal fluorides in a perfluoroheptane solvent to produce the orange-colored fluorochromates:

CrO 2F 2 + 2 MF → M 2CrO 2F 4

Chromyl fluoride will react with Lewis acids as well:

CrO 2F 2 + 2(CF 3CO) 2O → CrO 2(CF 3COO) 2 + CF 3COF

Chromyl fluoride forms adducts with weak bases NO, NO2, and SO2.


  1. ^ Gard, G. L. "Chromium Difluoride Dioxide (Chromyl Fluoride)" Inorganic Syntheses 1986, Volume 24, p67.
  2. Hobbs, W. E. "Infrared Absorption Spectra of Chromyl Fluoride and Chromyl Chloride" J. Chem. Phys. 28, 1220. doi:10.1063/1.1744372
  3. Supel, J., Abram, U., Hagenbach, A., Seppelt, K., Technetium Fluoride Trioxide, TcO3F, Preparation and Properties Inorg. Chem., 2007, 46 (14), 5591–5595. doi:10.1021/ic070333y
  4. ^ Engelbrecht, A., Grosse, A. V. Pure Chromyl Fluoride. J. Am. Chem. Soc. 74, 5262.
  5. Green, P.J., Gard, G.L., Chemistry of Chromyl Fluoride. New Preparative routes to CrO2F2. Inorg. Chem. 16, 1243. doi:10.1021/ic50171a055
  6. Brown, S. D., Green, P.J., Gard, G.L., The Chemistry of Chromyl Fluoride, III: Reactions with Inorganic Systems. J. Fluorine Chem. 5, 203 doi:10.1016/S0022-1139(00)82482-3

Retrieved from : http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Chromyl_fluoride