Silver(I) oxide produced by reacting lithium hydroxide with a very dilute silver nitrate solution
Silver oxide can be prepared by combining aqueous solutions of silver nitrate and an alkali hydroxide. This reaction does not afford appreciable amounts of silver hydroxide due to the favorable energetics for the following reaction:
US patent 20050050990 describes the preparation of Ag2O with properties suitable for use as a fine grained conductive paste filler.
Structure and properties
Ag2O features linear, two-coordinate Ag centers linked by tetrahedral oxides. It is isostructural with Cu2O. It "dissolves" in solvents that degrade it. It is slightly soluble in water due to the formation of the ion Ag(OH)2− and possibly related hydrolysis products. It dissolves in ammonia solution to give soluble derivatives.
A slurry of Ag2O is readily attacked by acids:
Like many silver compounds, silver oxide is photosensitive. It also decomposes at temperatures above 280 °C.
This oxide is used in silver-oxide battery. In organic chemistry, silver oxide is used as a mild oxidizing agent. For example, it oxidizes aldehydes to carboxylic acids. Such reactions often work best when the silver oxide is prepared in situ from silver nitrate and alkali hydroxide.
^Holleman, A. F.; Wiberg, E. "Inorganic Chemistry" Academic Press: San Diego, 2001. ISBN0-12-352651-5.
^Biedermann, George; Sillén, Lars Gunnar (1960). "Studies on the Hydrolysis of Metal Ions. Part 30. A Critical Survey of the Solubility Equilibria of Ag2O". Acta Chemica Scandinavica. 13: 717. doi:10.3891/acta.chem.scand.14-0717.