Lead(II) oxide

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Lead(II) oxide
Lead oxides.jpg
Lead(II) oxide being formed by the thermal decomposition of lead(II) carbonate.
IUPAC name
Lead(II) oxide
Other names
Lead monoxide
Plumbous oxide
Molar mass 223.20 g/mol
Appearance Red or yellow powder
Odor Odorless
Density 9.53 g/cm3
Melting point 888 °C (1,630 °F; 1,161 K)
Boiling point 1,477 °C (2,691 °F; 1,750 K)
0.0017 g/100 ml
Solubility Soluble in conc. alkalis, HCl, ammonium chloride
Insoluble in dil. alkalis, alcohols
Vapor pressure ~0 mmHg
Safety data sheet Sigma-Aldrich
Flash point Non-flammable
Lethal dose or concentration (LD, LC):
2,000 mg/kg (rat, dermal)
Related compounds
Related compounds
Lead(IV) oxide
Lead(II,IV) oxide
Except where otherwise noted, data are given for materials in their standard state (at 25 °C [77 °F], 100 kPa).
Infobox references

Lead(II) oxide, or lead monoxide, is an inorganic compound and one of several lead oxides. It has the chemical formula PbO.



Lead(II) oxide is a useful precursor to a variety of other lead compounds, as it is amphoteric. It will react with acids to form lead(II) salts and will dissolve in strong bases to form the plumbite (PbO22-) anion, which can be oxidized to form plumbate.


Lead(II) oxide has a diverse appearance depending on the manner in which it was produced, ranging from pale orange or apricot-colored to bright yellow, orange, or even red. It is typically encountered as a crusty or fine powder. When lead(II) oxide is heated, it temporarily becomes deeper and more saturated in color, for example changing from a light tan or apricot powder to a rich yellow. It is insoluble in water.


Lead glass contains the oxide, though it's impractical to extract it from it.

Lead(II) oxide can be bought from chemical suppliers.


Lead(II) oxide can be produced either by the oxidation of lower lead oxides or calcination of lead(II,IV) oxide at temperatures over 605 °C. An easier route is thermal decomposition of lead(II) carbonate, which is easily produced by precipitation from any soluble lead(II) salt, but this produces a less colorful product.


  • Lead glass
  • Water-proof cement



Like most lead compounds, lead(II) oxide is very toxic if consumed, causing long-term lead poisoning and inhaling the dust can cause headaches and dizziness.


In closed bottles and containers.


Lead oxide should be taken to waste disposal centers.


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