Tellurium tetrachloride is the inorganic compound with the empirical formula TeCl4. It is volatile, subliming at 200 °C at 0.1 mmHg. Molten TeCl4 is ionic, dissociating into the ions TeCl3+ and Te2Cl102
When heated, it decomposes to tellurium dioxide and hydrochloric acid. It is an experimental reagent and should be kept sealed and dry. It should be stored separately from oxidants, cyanides and H pore-forming agents. When spilled, it should be wiped up and disposed of in accordance with local, state and federal regulations.
Inhalation of tellurium tetrachloride dust may cause irritation to the respiratory tract. Chronic exposure can result in headache, drowsiness, metallic taste, garlic-like odor to the breath and sweat, nausea, vomiting and tremors. Tellurium has a low toxicity; however, elemental tellurium is converted to dimethyltelluride in the body which can suppress sweating and cause loss of appetite. It is also converted in the body to carbonyl telluride which can be fatal in large doses (Sax, Dangerous Properties of Industrial Materials, eighth edition). Chlorides are toxic to cells and can cause death by osmotic shock. They are also corrosive to most metals and can burn skin, tissue and eyes.