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Germanium tetrafluoride

Germanium tetrafluoride
Germanium tetrafluoride.svg
IUPAC names
Germanium tetrafluoride
Other names
Germanium(IV) fluoride
Germanium fluoride
3D model (JSmol)
ECHA InfoCard 100.029.101
EC Number 232-011-3
Molar mass 148.634 g/mol
Appearance colourless gas
Density 6.074 g/L (gas), 2.46 g/mL (liquid)[1]
Melting point −15 °C (5 °F; 258 K) at 4 bar
Boiling point −36.5 °C (−33.7 °F; 236.7 K) sublimates
−50.0·10−6 cm3/mol
-8.008 kJ/g
Main hazards Reacts with water to form HF, corrosive
R-phrases (outdated) R26 R35
S-phrases (outdated) S9 S26 S28 S36 S45
NFPA 704
Flammability code 0: Will not burn. E.g. waterHealth code 3: Short exposure could cause serious temporary or residual injury. E.g. chlorine gasReactivity code 2: Undergoes violent chemical change at elevated temperatures and pressures, reacts violently with water, or may form explosive mixtures with water. E.g. white phosphorusSpecial hazard W: Reacts with water in an unusual or dangerous manner. E.g. sodium, sulfuric acidNFPA 704 four-colored diamond
Flash point Non-flammable
Related compounds
Other anions
Germanium tetrachloride
Germanium tetrabromide
Germanium tetraiodide
Other cations
Carbon tetrafluoride
Silicon tetrafluoride
Tin tetrafluoride
Lead tetrafluoride
Related compounds
Germanium difluoride
Except where otherwise noted, data are given for materials in their standard state (at 25 °C [77 °F], 100 kPa).
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Infobox references

Germanium tetrafluoride (GeF4) is a chemical compound of germanium and fluorine. It is a colorless gas.


Germanium tetrafluoride is formed by treating germanium with fluorine:

Ge + 2 F2 → GeF4

Alternatively germanium dioxide combines with hydrofluoric acid (HF):[3]

GeO2 + 4 HF → GeF4 + 2 H2O

It is also formed during the thermal decomposition of a complex salt, Ba[GeF6]:[4]

Ba(GeF6) → GeF4 + BaF2


Germanium tetrafluoride is a noncombustible, strongly fuming gas with a garlic-like odor. It reacts with water to form hydrofluoric acid and germanium dioxide. Decomposition occurs above 1000 °C.[5]

Reaction of GeF4 with fluoride sources produces GeF5 anions with octahedral coordination around Ge atom due to polymerization.[6] The structural characterization of a discrete trigonal bipyramidal GeF5 anion was achieved by a "naked" fluoride reagent 1,3-bis(2,6-diisopropylphenyl)imidazolium fluoride.[7]


In combination with disilane, germanium tetrafluoride is used for in the synthesis of SiGe.[1]


  1. ^ a b Germanium(IV) fluoride.
  2. ^ Lide, D. R., ed. (2005). CRC Handbook of Chemistry and Physics (86th ed.). Boca Raton (FL): CRC Press. p. 4.64. ISBN 0-8493-0486-5.
  3. ^ Greenwood, N. N.; Earnshaw, A. (1998). Chemistry of the Elements (second edition). Butterworth Heinemann. pp. 376–377. ISBN 0-7506-3365-4.
  4. ^ Georg Brauer: Handbuch der Präparativen Anorganischen Chemie
  5. ^ Germaniumtetrafluorid. IFA Database
  6. ^ Mallouk, T. E.; Desbat, B.; Bartlett, N. (1984). "Structural Studies of salts of cis and trans μ-Fluoro-Bridged Polymers of Pentafluorogermanate(1-) and of the Pentafluorogermanate(1-) Monomer". Inorganic Chemistry. 23: 3160-3166. doi:10.1021/ic00188a027.
  7. ^ Alič, B.; Tramšek, M.; Kokalj, A.; Tavčar, G. (2017). "Discrete GeF5 Anion Structurally Characterized with a Readily Synthesized Imidazolium Based Naked Fluoride Reagent". Inorganic Chemistry. 56: 10070-10077. doi:10.1021/acs.inorgchem.7b01606.

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