A Publication
of Reliable Methods
for the Preparation
of Organic Compounds
Annual Volume
Org. Synth. 1928, 8, 64
DOI: 10.15227/orgsyn.008.0064
[Disulfide, bis (o-nitrophenyl)]
Submitted by Marston T. Bogert and Arthur Stull.
Checked by Frank C. Whitmore, W. F. Singleton, and F. E. Smith.
1. Procedure
In a 3-l. round-bottomed flask fitted with a reflux condenser are placed 360 g. (1.5 moles) of crystalline sodium sulfide (Note 1) and 1.5 l. of 95 per cent alcohol. The flask is heated on a steam bath until the sulfide dissolves. Then 48 g. (1.5 atoms) of finely ground sulfur is added, and the heating is continued until the sulfur has dissolved, forming a brownish-red solution of sodium disulfide (Note 2). A solution of 315 g. (2 moles) of ochloronitrobenzene (Note 3) in 500 cc. of 95 per cent alcohol is prepared in a 5-l. round-bottomed flask fitted with a reflux condenser. The sodium disulfide solution is added slowly to this solution through a funnel placed in the top of the reflux condenser. The addition should be slow until the violence of the reaction abates somewhat.
The mixture is then heated on a steam bath, gently at first (Note 4), and then at full heat for two hours. After cooling, it is filtered by suction. The mixture of the organic disulfide and the sodium chloride is transferred to a 1-l. beaker and stirred thoroughly with 500 cc. of water to remove the sodium chloride. It is then filtered by suction and the crystalline residue is washed on the filter with 100 cc. of alcohol to remove any o-chloronitrobenzene. The product melting at 192–195° weighs 180–210 g. (58–66 per cent of the theoretical amount).
2. Notes
1. Crystals as dry as possible should be selected. If desired, an equivalent amount of analyzed fused sodium sulfide may be used. In this case, solution takes a longer time. Since an excess of sodium sulfide is added, slight inaccuracies in the amount used are not important.
2. In case a small amount of sodium disulfide separates in a layer at the bottom, it should be taken up with a little more alcohol and added to the chloronitrobenzene solution.
3. Commercial o-chloronitrobenzene containing 95–98 per cent of the ortho compound was used.
4. If too much heat is applied at first, the reaction becomes very violent.
3. Discussion
Di-o-nitrophenyl disulfide can be prepared by heating o-chloronitrobenzene in alcohol with sodium sulfide and sulfur1 and from o-nitrophenylsulfur chloride and potassium hydrosulfide.2 The procedure described is that of Blanksma3 as elaborated by Wohlfahrt.4

References and Notes
  1. Elgersma, Rec. trav. chim. 48, 752 (1929).
  2. Dougherty and Haas, J. Am. Chem. Soc. 59, 2469 (1937).
  3. Blanksma, Rec. trav. chim. 20, 127 (1901).
  4. Wohlfahrt, J.prakt. Chem. (2) 66, 553 (1902).

Chemical Abstracts Nomenclature (Collective Index Number);
(Registry Number)

alcohol (64-17-5)

sodium chloride (7647-14-5)

sulfur (7704-34-9)

ochloronitrobenzene (88-73-3)

sodium sulfide (1313-82-2)

sodium disulfide

potassium hydrosulfide (1310-61-8)

Di-o-nitrophenyl disulfide,
Disulfide, bis (o-nitrophenyl) (1155-00-6)

o-Nitrophenylsulfur chloride (7669-54-7)