Letter | Published:

Role of Oxygen in the Photolysis of Iodides

Naturevolume 166pages156157 (1950) | Download Citation



THE decomposition by ultra-violet light of organic compounds containing iodine in solution has been the subject of many investigations, and references to this phenomenon are scattered throughout the photochemical literature. Summaries of the results and conclusions reached by the various investigators have been fairly well dealt with in recent books on the subject1. In the majority of cases, the quantum yields of the photochemical process have been determined by the amount of iodine formed in relation to the light absorbed. For the alkyl iodides, at least, these yields show no intelligible variation among themselves, and often the yield for a particular iodide varies from one investigator to another. There always has been a doubt as to whether or not dissolved oxygen was involved in the photolysis2, in spite of the fact that many investigators have taken the trouble to distil their materials in vacuo, or to bubble inert gases through the solution before the photolysis. More convincing work along these lines has been undertaken in recent years by Olaerts and Jungers3; but it remains to be seen if they have really succeeded in removing the last trace of oxygen from their solutions.

Access optionsAccess options

Rent or Buy article

Get time limited or full article access on ReadCube.


All prices are NET prices.


  1. 1

    For example, Rollefson and Burton, “Photochemistry” (1942).

  2. 2

    Dickinson, Chem. Rev., 17, 416 (1935).

  3. 3

    Discuss. Farad. Soc., No. 2, 228 (1947).

  4. 4

    Trans. Farad. Soc., 30, 120 (1934).

  5. 5

    Blaedel, Ogg and Leighton, J. Amer. Chem. Soc., 64, 2499 (1942).

  6. 6

    Nature, 150, 579 (1942).

  7. 7

    J. Chem. Soc., 1531, 1544 (1938).

  8. 8

    Gniewasz and Walfisz, Z. phys. Chem., 1, 70 (1887).

Download references

Author information


  1. Physico-chemical Laboratories, University of Sydney

    •  & T. IREDALE


  1. Search for S. HACOBIAN in:

  2. Search for T. IREDALE in:

About this article

Publication history

Issue Date



Further reading


By submitting a comment you agree to abide by our Terms and Community Guidelines. If you find something abusive or that does not comply with our terms or guidelines please flag it as inappropriate.