Silver chloride

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Silver chloride
IUPAC name
Silver chloride
Other names
Argentous chloride
Horn silver
Silver(I) chloride
Molar mass 143.32 g/mol
Appearance White solid
Odor Odorless
Density 5.56 g/cm3
Melting point 455 °C (851 °F; 728 K)
Boiling point 1,547 °C (2,817 °F; 1,820 K)
0.00052 g/100 ml (50 °C)
Solubility Soluble in NH3, conc. HCl, conc. H2SO4, alkali cyanide
Vapor pressure ~0 mmHg
96 J·mol−1·K−1
−127 kJ/mol
Safety data sheet Sigma-Aldrich
Flash point Non-flammable
Lethal dose or concentration (LD, LC):
5,000 mg/kg (rat, oral)
Related compounds
Related compounds
Silver(I) fluoride
Silver bromide
Silver iodide
Except where otherwise noted, data are given for materials in their standard state (at 25 °C [77 °F], 100 kPa).
Infobox references

Silver chloride is an inorganic chemical compound with the chemical formula AgCl. The compound is known for its extremely low water solubility.



Silver chloride will slowly decompose when exposed to light into silver metal and chlorine gas.

2 AgCl → 2 Ag + Cl2

Silver chloride does not react with nitric acid. Thus, silver metal will not dissolve in aqua regia.


Silver chloride is an insoluble white solid, which slowly decomposes when exposed to light.


Silver chloride is sold by chemical suppliers. Since it's a silver compound, it's not very cheap.

AgCl occurs naturally as a mineral chlorargyrite.


Silver chloride is extremely easy to prepare by metathesis reaction: a soluble chloride salt, like NaCl is added as solution to a solution of a soluble silver salt, such as silver nitrate. Due to its extremely low solubility, silver chloride will precipitate out of the solution, and can be filtered from the resulting suspension, washed and then dried.

AgNO3 + NaCl → NaNO3 + AgCl


  • Make photographic paper (photography)
  • Silver chloride electrode (common reference electrode in electrochemistry)
  • Pottery glazes ("Inglaze lustre")
  • Antidote for mercury poisoning
  • Compound collecting



Silver chloride may be harmful if ingested in large amounts, but usually it doesn't pose a serious health risk. May cause silver stains though.


In closed amber glass or plastic bottles, away from light and reducing agents.


Since silver is expensive, AgCl should be recycled. This can be done by reducing the compound to Ag metal, which is then collected and stored for further uses.


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