strontium arsenide is a compound made of strontium and nitrogen. It has the molecular formula Sr(NO3)2. It is a white solid and is noncombustible. However, it enhances the burning of combustible compounds and is used in pyrotechnics. Inhaling its fumes can irritate the lungs and throat.
The element strontium (Sr) is an alkaline earth metal and the 15th most abundant element in the Earth’s crust. It is very similar in its properties to its vertical neighbors, calcium and barium. Like them, it is also highly chemically reactive and rapidly forms a dark oxide layer when exposed to air. In nature, it is found mainly in the minerals celestine and strontianite as strontium sulfate and strontium carbonate respectively. It is also a trace component in the mineral bismuthinite and as a rare constituent of some ores of other metals.
Nitrogen is an essential element and found mainly in the atmosphere as nitrogen gas N2 (N2). It is also present in small amounts in most organic substances. It is an important part of the nitric acid, HNO3, that is used in organic synthesis and in the manufacture of explosives. It is also found in the saltpeter, KNO3, which is used as a fertilizer.
The metalloids arsenic and antimony are toxic, but they are also found in alloys with other metals to make them harder and in semiconductors. They are very poisonous when ingested, but they can be made safe to use by treating them with antimony trioxide, Sb2O3. Powdered antimony sulfide, Sb2S3, was once used as a mascara called “Greek fire.” It is also found in the pigments of red traffic signals and railroad flares.