Bromine trifluoride

Bromine trifluoride
7787-71-5 N
ECHA InfoCard 100.029.211
PubChem 24594
Molar mass 136.90 g/mol
Appearance straw-coloured liquid
Odor Choking, pungent[1]
Density 2.803 g/cm3 [2]
Melting point 8.77 °C (47.79 °F; 281.92 K)
Boiling point 125.72 °C (258.30 °F; 398.87 K)
decomposes violently[3]
Solubility in sulfuric acid very soluble
T-shaped (C2v)
1.19 D
Main hazards dangerously sensitive to water, source of HF
Safety data sheet See: data page
O T+ C [1]
NFPA 704
Related compounds
Other anions
Bromine monochloride
Other cations
Chlorine trifluoride
Iodine trifluoride
Related compounds
Bromine monofluoride
Bromine pentafluoride
Supplementary data page
Refractive index (n),
Dielectric constantr), etc.
Phase behaviour
Except where otherwise noted, data are given for materials in their standard state (at 25 °C [77 °F], 100 kPa).
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Infobox references

Bromine trifluoride is an interhalogen compound with the formula BrF3. It is a straw-coloured liquid with a pungent odor.[4] It is soluble in sulfuric acid but explodes on contact with water and organic compounds. It is a powerful fluorinating agent and an ionizing inorganic solvent. It is used to produce uranium hexafluoride (UF6) in the processing and reprocessing of nuclear fuel.[5]


Bromine trifluoride was first described by Paul Lebeau in 1906, who obtained the material by the reaction of bromine with fluorine at 20 °C:[6]

Br2 + 3 F2 → 2 BrF3

The disproportionation of bromine monofluoride also gives bromine trifluoride:[4]

3 BrF → BrF3 + Br2


Like ClF3 and IF3, the BrF3 molecule is T-shaped. In the VSEPR formalism, the bromine center is assigned two electron pairs. The distance from the bromine each axial fluorine is 1.81 Å and to the equatorial fluorine is 1.72 Å. The angle between an axial fluorine and the equatorial fluorine is slightly smaller than 90° — the 86.2° angle observed is due to the repulsion generated by the electron pairs being greater than that of the Br-F bonds.[7][8]

Chemical properties

BrF3 is a fluorinating agent, but less reactive than ClF3. The liquid is conducting, owing to autoionisation:[5]

2 BrF3 BrF2+ + BrF4

Many ionic fluorides dissolve readily in BrF3 forming fluoroanions:[5]

KF + BrF3 → KBrF4


  1. 1 2
  2. Lide, David R., ed. (2006). CRC Handbook of Chemistry and Physics (87th ed.). Boca Raton, FL: CRC Press. ISBN 0-8493-0487-3.
  3. "Archived copy" (PDF). Archived from the original (PDF) on 2012-05-13. Retrieved 2012-11-25.
  4. 1 2 Simons JH (1950). "Bromine (III) Fluoride - Bromine Trifluoride". Inorganic Synthesis. Inorganic Syntheses. 3: 184–186. doi:10.1002/9780470132340.ch48. ISBN 978-0-470-13234-0.
  5. 1 2 3 Greenwood, Norman N.; Earnshaw, Alan (1997). Chemistry of the Elements (2nd ed.). Butterworth-Heinemann. ISBN 0-08-037941-9.
  6. Lebeau P. (1906). "The effect of fluorine on chloride and on bromine". Annales de Chimie et de Physique. 9: 241–263.
  7. Gutmann V (1950). "Die Chemie in Bromitrifluorid". Angewandte Chemie. 62 (13–14): 312–315. doi:10.1002/ange.19500621305.
  8. Meinert H (1967). "Interhalogenverbindungen". Zeitschrift für Chemie. 7: 41.
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