Pure amorphous boron is a chestnut-coloured powder of specific gravity 2.45; it sublimes in the electric arc, is totally unaffected by air at ordinary temperatures, and burns on strong ignition with production of the oxide B 2 0 3 and the nitride BN.
It is decomposed by water, and with a solution of yellow phosphorus in carbon bisulphide it gives a red powder of composition PBI 2, which sublimes in vacuo at 210° C. to red crystals, and when heated in a current of hydrogen loses its iodine and leaves a residue of boron phosphide PB.
It sublimes in small rhombic tables or needles, and is slightly soluble in cold water, the solution possessing an acid reaction.
It sublimes in thin plates of a dark colour and metallic lustre, and is soluble in solutions of the caustic alkalis.
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