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What are the uses of aluminum sulfide?

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Quick Answer

Aluminum sulfide is used to produce hydrogen sulfide. Aluminum sulfide's chemical formula is Al2S3; it reacts to water by decomposing into hydroxides. It also reacts to water in the atmosphere. However, aluminum sulfide is insoluble in acetone.

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Full Answer

Igniting aluminum and sulfur produces aluminum sulfide. The process is explosive, and the resulting compound is initially hot enough to melt steel.

Aluminum sulfide is a gray solid that has over six forms, including alpha, beta, gamma and delta. The alpha and beta forms have hexagonal symmetry, the gamma form has trigonal symmetry, and the delta form has tetragonal symmetry.

The melting point of aluminum sulfide is 2,010 degrees Fahrenheit, while the boiling point is 2,730 F. Aluminum sulfide sublimes, which means it goes directly from a solid to a gas. It has a molar mass of 150.158 grams per mole.

Hydrogen sulfide is a gas that is well-known for giving off the smell of rotten eggs. It is toxic and flammable, and because it's heavier than air, it tends to sink to the bottom of places with poor ventilation. Some of its uses are to produce organic compounds such as enthanethiol and chemicals that are used in the tanning and paper-making industries.

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