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Indium sesqui-oxide, In2O3

Indium sesqui-oxide, In2O3, obtained when indium is heated in air or oxygen, is prepared by the ignition of the hydroxide, carbonate, nitrate, or sulphate. Prepared at fairly low temperatures, it forms a yellow, amorphous powder which is readily soluble in acids, producing indium salts ; but when produced at high temperatures, it forms rhombohedral crystals of the colour of chlorine, and is extremely resistant towards acids. The density is 7.18; the specific heat (0° to 100°), 0.0807. It is diamagnetic.

Indium sesqui-oxide is reduced to indium when heated with sodium, carbon, or magnesium, or when heated in either hydrogen or ammonia; and by carefully regulating the reduction in hydrogen, Winkler claims to have obtained lower oxides, including a black monoxide InO.

When heated above 850°, indium sesqui-oxide loses oxygen and becomes converted into the oxide In3O4, which crystallises in regular octahedra isomorphous with Fe3O4. The loss in weight associated with this change had previously been attributed to the volatility of the sesqui-oxide.

Neither the oxide In3O4 nor the (metastable) In2O3 fuses in the oxy-hydrogen flame

From the data supplied by Ditte the following results may be deduced: -

2[In] + 3(O) = [In2O3] + 239.8 Cals.
[In2O3] + = In2(SO4) + 72.78 Cals.

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