Antimony Trioxide is commonly known as ATO and has chemical formula Sb2O3. Antimony Trioxide is a white and odorless crystalline powder. It is an amphoteric oxide, which can dissolve both in alkaline and acidic solutions. ATO gives antimonites when dissolved in alkaline solution and gives polyantimonous acids when dissolved in acid solution. ATO can easily be oxidized or reduced; it can be oxidized to antimony pentoxide and various other antimony compounds. ATO is toxic, it is presumed to have carcinogenic potential for humans.
Antimony oxide can be prepared by two processes, the direct and indirect process.
In this process, antimony metal or ores is melted in a furnace to give ATO vapors. The vapors are quenched with air and cooled to convert the vapor to white powder .These powders are further filtered to give antimony trioxide powder.
In this process crude antimony oxide is roasted in the presence of air to give ATO vapors. The vapors are then condensed to convert the vapor to white powder. These powders are further filtered to give antimony trioxide powder.