On the pH-dependent formation constants of iron(III)-sulfur(IV) transient complexes

Eric A. Betterton

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18 Scopus citations


An experimental study is described of Fe(III)-S(IV) formation constants measured as a function of pH (1-3), ionic strength (0.2-0.5 M) and [Fe(III)]T (2.5-5.0×10-4 M) using a continuous-flow spectrophotometric technique to make observations 160 ms after mixing. Preliminary experiments using pulse-accelerated-flow (PAF) spectrophotometry to measure rate constants on a microsecond timescale are also described. The conditional formation constant at 25 °C can be modeled with the following equation: {ie307-1} where {ie307-2}K7 and K8 can be interpreted as intrinsic constants for the coordination of HSO3- by FeOH2+ and Fe3+, respectively, but until further evidence is obtained they should be regarded as fitting constants. PAF spectrophotometry showed that the initial reaction of Fe(III) with S(IV) (pH 2.0) is characterized by a second-order rate constant of ≈4×106 M-1 s-1 which is comparable to rate of reaction of FeOH2+ with SO42-. However, the PAF results should be regarded as preliminary since unexpected features in the initial data indicate that the reaction may be more complex than expected.

Original languageEnglish (US)
Pages (from-to)307-324
Number of pages18
JournalJournal of Atmospheric Chemistry
Issue number4
StatePublished - Nov 1993


  • Sulfur dioxide
  • iron(III)-S(IV) complexes
  • pulsed-accelerated-flow spectrophotometry
  • sulfur(IV) autoxidation

ASJC Scopus subject areas

  • Environmental Chemistry
  • Atmospheric Science


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