Ruthenium tetroxide

Ruthenium Tetroxide

Ruthenium tetroxide

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Ruthenium tetroxide (RuO<sub>4</sub>) is a diamagnetic tetrahedral ruthenium compound. As expected for a charge-neutral symmetrical oxide, it is quite volatile. The analogous OsO<sub>4</sub> is more widely used and better known. One of the few solvents in which it forms stable solutions is CCl<sub>4</sub>.


RuO<sub>4</sub> is prepared by oxidation of ruthenium chloride with NaIO<sub>4</sub>.

8 Ru<sup>3+</sup> + 5 IO<sub>4</sub><sup>&minus;</sup> + 12 H<sub>2</sub>O &rarr; 8 RuO<sub>4</sub> + 5 I<sup>&minus;</sup> + 24 H<sup>+</sup>
<!--equation assumes reduction of periodate produces iodide, rather than (say) iodine or hypoiodite-->

In typical reactions featuring RuO<sub>4</sub> as the oxidant, many forms of ruthenium usefully serve as precursors to RuO<sub>4</sub>, such as oxide hydrates or hydrated chloride.

Because RuO<sub>4</sub> will readily decompose explosively at slightly elevated temperatures, most laboratories do not synthesize it directly, nor is it commercially available through major chemical vendors. Most laboratories instead use an anionic derivative from a salt of "TPAP" (tetrapropylammonium perruthenate), RuO<sub>4</sub>. TPAP is synthesized by oxidizing RuCl<sub>3</sub> to...
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