Uranium hexoxide
3D model (JSmol)
  • InChI=1S/6O.U
  • O=[U](=O)(=O)(=O)(=O)=O
Molar mass 334.0288 g/mol
Except where otherwise noted, data are given for materials in their standard state (at 25 °C [77 °F], 100 kPa).

Uranium hexoxide is an unusual, theoretically possible compound of uranium in which the uranium atom would be attached to six oxygen atoms.[1][2] Some sources claimed it would be an unprecedented example of an element in the +12 oxidation state;[1] for comparison, the highest known oxidation state is +9 for iridium in the cation IrO+
.[3][4] This oxidation state assignment requires participation of 6p electrons of uranium as valence electrons. This assertion was disputed by a later paper,[2] which formulates the octahedral species as O(–I) and U(VI), although it does acknowledge that the question of valence shell expansion of uranium and other actinoids is complex and that the "semi-core" 6p electrons of uranium are involved to a non-negligible extent in the bonding of structures such as octahedral UO6.


Uranium hexoxide is predicted to have octahedral symmetry; however, other forms have been studied. In the 1Oh the oxygen atoms are oxide ions (O2−). In the 1D3 form there are three peroxide ions (O2−
). The 3D2h form has two oxo oxygens and two pairs of superoxide (O
). The octahedral form was calculated to be less energetically favorable than the other geometries though still predicted to be a local energy minimum.[2]


  1. ^ a b Pyykkö, P.; Runeberg, N.; Straka, M.; Dyall, K. G. (2000). "Could uranium(XII)hexoxide, UO6 (Oh) exist?" (PDF). Chemical Physics Letters. 328 (4–6): 415–419. Bibcode:2000CPL...328..415P. doi:10.1016/S0009-2614(00)00958-1.[permanent dead link]
  2. ^ a b c Xiao, H.; Hu, H. S.; Schwarz, W. H. E.; Li, J. (2010). "Theoretical Investigations of Geometry, Electronic Structure and Stability of UO6: Octahedral Uranium Hexoxide and Its Isomers". The Journal of Physical Chemistry A. 114 (33): 8837–8844. doi:10.1021/jp102107n. PMID 20572656.
  3. ^ Wang, Guanjun; Zhou, Mingfei; Goettel, James T.; Schrobilgen, Gary J.; Su, Jing; Li, Jun; Schlöder, Tobias; Riedel, Sebastian (23 October 2014). "Identification of an iridium-containing compound with a formal oxidation state of IX". Nature. 514 (7523): 475–477. Bibcode:2014Natur.514..475W. doi:10.1038/nature13795. PMID 25341786. S2CID 4463905.
  4. ^ Himmel, D.; Knapp, C.; Patzschke, M.; Riedel, S. (2010). "How far can we go? Quantum-chemical investigations of oxidation state IX". ChemPhysChem. 11 (4): 865–869. doi:10.1002/cphc.200900910. PMID 20127784.