Chemistry ETDs

Publication Date



The original object of this investigation was not only to investigate the chemistry and preparation of the complex compound, UCl5•PCl5, but to separate it into its constituents, uranium pentachloride and phosphorus pentachloride, thus establishing a new method of preparing the uranium pentachloride. Optimum conditions for the preparative reaction of UCl5•PCl5, partially investigated by Suttle (25), were to be established. Reactions were to be investigated which might be used for preparation of similar compounds of uranium pentachloride. The possible existence of other uranium pentachloride-phosphorus pentachloride compounds was to be determined. Electrolyses in phosphorus oxychloride with the object of effecting the separation mentioned above were to be undertaken.

It was also considered that such electrolyses would perhaps lead to new preparatie methods for other uranium compounds, such as the hexachloride, and to perhaps some previously unknown complex compounds. The fact that all reactions involving uranium tetra-, penta-, and hexachlorides must be carried out in some anhydrous manner led to the belief that new reactions and uranium compounds might be discovered through the use of the solvent phosphorus oxychloride. That this expectation was realized is shown in the following report of the investigations.

Project Sponsors

Los Alamos Scientific Laboratory



Document Type


Degree Name


Level of Degree


Department Name

Department of Chemistry and Chemical Biology

First Committee Member (Chair)

John Francis Suttle

Second Committee Member

Jesse LeRoy Riebsomer

Third Committee Member

Milton Kahn

Fourth Committee Member

Guido Herman Daub

Fifth Committee Member

Abraham Rosenzweig