Gold trichloride

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Dark orange crystals that decompose with light or heat. An aqueous solution is called chlorauric acid or acid gold trichloride. Gold trichloride is used as a toner for black and white photographs. It is also used as a glaze for ceramics, enameling glass and making Ruby glass. Other uses of gold trichloride include gold plating and the production of fine gold powder.

Synonyms and Related Terms

auric chloride; auric trichloride; gold (III) chloride; chlorauric acid (solution)


Decomposes with heat. Very hygroscopic. Contact, inhalation, and ingestion cause irritation and blisters. May cause severe allergic reactions.

Fisher Scientific: MSDS

Physical and Chemical Properties

Soluble in water, ethanol and ether.

Composition AuCl3
CAS 13453-07-1
Density 3.9 g/ml
Molecular Weight mol. wt. = 303.32
Boiling Point 229 C

Resources and Citations

  • Thomas Gregory, The Condensed Chemical Dictionary, Reinhold Publishing, New York, 3rd ed., 1942
  • The Merck Index, Martha Windholz (ed.), Merck Research Labs, Rahway NJ, 10th edition, 1983 Comment: entry 4542
  • Michael McCann, Artist Beware, Watson-Guptill Publications, New York City, 1979