Synthetic antimony trioxide, produced by roasting antimony ore then mixing with barium sulfate, was introduced as an artists' pigment called antimony white in 1920. Antinomy white was sold under the name Timonox. It is inert, has good hiding power and low oil absorption. Since it is darkened by hydrogen sulfide, it is often mixed with zinc oxide which has preferential absorption for that gas (Gettens and Stout 1966). Some samples may contain senarmonite and/or valentinite, two known mineral forms of antimony oxide. Octahedral arsenic oxide may also be present as an impurity. Antimony trioxide is used as a white pigment and opacifiers in enamels and glasses. It is also used to flameproof textiles, paper and plastic.
Synonyms and Related Terms
antimony trioxide; Pigment White 11; blanco de antimonio (Esp.); blanc d'antimoine (Fr.); bianco d'antimonio (It.); branco de antimónio (Port.); Timonox [Cookson Lead and Antimony, England];
Hazards and Safety
Highly toxic by inhalation and ingestion. Skin contact is corrosive. Carcinogenic
R. J. Gettens and G.L. Stout, Painting Materials, A Short Encyclopaedia, Dover Publications, New York, 1966.
Sources Checked for Data in Record
- R. J. Gettens, G.L. Stout, Painting Materials, A Short Encyclopaedia, Dover Publications, New York, 1966
- Ralph Mayer, A Dictionary of Art Terms and Techniques, Harper and Row Publishers, New York, 1969 (also 1945 printing)
- Michael McCann, Artist Beware, Watson-Guptill Publications, New York City, 1979