Potassium amide

Potassium amide is an inorganic compound with the chemical formula KNH2. Like other alkali metal amides, it is a white solid that hydrolyzes readily. It is a strong base.[1]

Potassium amide
subunit of KNH2(NH3)2 emphasizing the coordination sphere of potassium
IUPAC name
Potassium amide
3D model (JSmol)
ECHA InfoCard 100.037.508 Edit this at Wikidata
EC Number
  • 241-275-9
  • InChI=1S/K.H2N/h;1H2/q+1;-1 ☒N
  • InChI=1/K.H2N/h;1H2/q+1;-1
  • [NH2-].[K+]
Molar mass 55.121 g·mol−1
Appearance white solid
Odor ammonia-like
Density 1.57 g/cm 3
Melting point 338 °C (640 °F; 611 K)
Solubility ammonia: 3.6 g/100 mL
-128.9 kJ/mol
Related compounds
Other cations
Lithium amide
Sodium amide
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
Traditionally KNH2 is viewed as a simple salt, but it is a covalent compound that is highly aggregated in ammonia solution.


Potassium amide is produced by the reaction of ammonia with potassium. The reaction typically requires a catalyst.[2]


The compound has been characterized by X-ray crystallography as the solvent-free form[3] as well as the mono- and diammonia solvates. In KNH2(NH3)2, the potassium centers are each bonded to two amido ligands and four ammonia ligands, all six of which bridge to adjacent potassium centers. The result is a chain of hexacoordinate potassium ions. The K-NH2 distances are 2.7652(11) whereas the K-NH3 distances are respectively 2.9234(11) and 3.0698(11) Å.[4]


  1. ^ Takaki, Katherine S. (2001). "Potassium Amide". Encyclopedia of Reagents for Organic Synthesis. doi:10.1002/047084289X.rp193. ISBN 0471936235.
  2. ^ O. Glemser, H. Sauer (1963). "Silver Amide". In G. Brauer (ed.). Handbook of Preparative Inorganic Chemistry, 2nd Ed. Vol. 1. NY,NY: Academic Press. p. 1043.
  3. ^ Juza, R.; Jacobs, H.; Klose, W. (1965). "Die Kristallstrukturen der Tieftemperaturmodifikationen von Kalium- und Rubidiumamid". Zeitschrift für Anorganische und Allgemeine Chemie. 338 (3–4): 171–178. doi:10.1002/zaac.19653380309.
  4. ^ Kraus, Florian; Korber, Nikolaus (2005). "Hydrogen Bonds in Potassium Amide-Ammonia(1/2), KNH2.2NH3". Zeitschrift für Anorganische und Allgemeine Chemie. 631 (6–7): 1032–1034. doi:10.1002/zaac.200400467.

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