Add to MyChemicals Print Friendly Page
Chemical Datasheet

SULFUR DIOXIDE

2.3 - Poisonous gas 8 - Corrosive material
Chemical Identifiers | Hazards | Response Recommendations | Physical Properties | Regulatory Information | Alternate Chemical Names

Chemical Identifiers

CAS Number - Chemical Abstracts Service registry number. Unique identification number assigned to this chemical by the American Chemical Society.

UN/NA Number - The United Nations-North America number (also called UN number or DOT number). 4-digit number identifying an individual chemical or group of chemicals with similar characteristics. Required on shipping papers; often shown on placards or labels. This numbering system was developed by the U.S. Department of Transportation, and then became the UN standard system for classifying hazardous materials.

DOT Hazard Label - U.S. Department of Transportation hazard warning label for the chemical (such as flammable liquid or corrosive). This label must be displayed on shipped packages, railroad tank cars, and tank trucks according to specifications described in 49 CFR 172.

CHRIS Code - 3-letter code used by the U.S. Coast Guard to identify individual chemicals included in its CHRIS (Chemical Hazards Response Information System) manual.

NFPA 704 - Text description of the diamond-shaped placard, which contains codes indicating the level of the chemical's health, flammability, and instability hazards, along with special hazards such as water- and air-reactivity. See a guide to the NFPA diamond.

General Description - Brief description of the chemical's general appearance, behavior, and hazardousness.

List of data sources.
CAS Number UN/NA Number DOT Hazard Label CHRIS Code
  • 7446-09-5   (SULFUR DIOXIDE)
  • Poison Gas
  • Corrosive
NFPA 704
Diamond Hazard Value Description
0
3 0
Blue Health 3 Can cause serious or permanent injury.
Red Flammability 0 Will not burn under typical fire conditions.
Yellow Instability 0 Normally stable, even under fire conditions.
White Special
(NFPA, 2010)
General Description
A colorless gas with a choking or suffocating odor. Boiling point -10°C. Heavier than air. Very toxic by inhalation and may irritate the eyes and mucous membranes. Under prolonged exposure to fire or heat the containers may rupture violently and rocket. Used to manufacture chemicals, in paper pulping, in metal and food processing.

Rate of onset: Immediate & Delayed

Persistence: Minutes to hours

Odor threshold: 1 ppm

Source/use/other hazard: Disinfectant and preserving in breweries and food/canning; textile industry; batteries.

Hazards

Reactivity Alerts - Special alerts if the chemical is especially reactive (see list of reactivity alerts).

Air & Water Reactions - Special alerts if the chemical reacts with air, water, or moisture.

Fire Hazard - Description of the chemical's fire hazards (such as flammability, explosion risk, or byproducts that may evolve if the chemical is burned).

Health Hazard - Description of the chemical's health hazards (such as toxicity, flammability, or corrosivity).

Reactivity Profile - Description of the chemical's potential reactivity with other chemicals, air, and water. Also includes any other intrinsic reactive hazards (such as polymerizable or peroxidizable).

Reactive Groups - List of reactive groups that the chemical is assigned to, based on its known chemistry. Reactive groups are categories of chemicals that react in similar ways because their chemical structures are similar. Reactive groups are used to predict reactivity when you add a chemical to MyChemicals. Read more about reactive groups.

Potentially Incompatible Absorbents - Absorbents are products that can be used to soak up liquids from spills. However, some absorbents can react with particular chemicals (that is, they are incompatible), so caution should be used in selecting the correct absorbent for your situation. This section provides a list of potentially incompatible absorbents that have been known to react with liquids assigned to one or more of the reactive groups listed on this datasheet. Read more about absorbents, including situations to watch out for.

List of data sources.
Reactivity Alerts
Air & Water Reactions
Dissolves in water to form sulfurous acid, a corrosive liquid. Moist sulfur dioxide is very corrosive due to the slow formation of sulfuric acid [Handling Chemicals Safely 1980 p. 876].
Fire Hazard
Containers may explode in heat of fire or they may rupture and release irritating toxic sulfur dioxide. Sulfur dioxide has explosive properties when it comes in contact with sodium hydride; potassium chlorate at elevated temperatures; ethanol; ether; zinc ethylsulfurinate at very cool temperatures (-15C); fluorine; chlorine trifluoride and chlorates. It will react with water or steam to produce toxic and corrosive fumes. When the liquid is heated it may release irritating, toxic sulfur dioxide gas. Avoid ammonia, monocesium or monopotassium acetylide; dicesium monoxide; iron (II) oxide; tin oxide; lead (IV) oxide; chromium; manganese; molten sodium, powder aluminum and rubidium. Sulfur dioxide has explosive properties when it comes in contact with sodium hydride; potassium chlorate at elevated temperatures; ethanol; ether; zinc ethylsulfurinate at very cool temperatures (-15C); fluorine; chlorine trifluoride and chlorates. It will react with water or steam to produce toxic and corrosive fumes. Hazardous polymerization may not occur. (EPA, 1998)
Health Hazard
It may cause death or permanent injury after very short exposure to small quantities. 1,000 ppm causes death in from 10 minutes to several hours by respiratory depression. It is an eye and respiratory tract irritant. Persons with asthma, subnormal pulmonary functions or cardiovascular disease are at a greater risk. (EPA, 1998)
Reactivity Profile
SULFUR DIOXIDE is acidic. Reacts exothermically with bases such as amines, amides, metal oxides, and hydroxides. Frequently used as a reducing agent although it is not a powerful one. Acts as a reducing bleach to decolorize many materials. Can act as an oxidizing agent. Supports combustion of powdered aluminum [Mellor 5:209-212 1946-47]. Reacts explosively with fluorine [Mellor 2:1 1946-47]. Supports burning of manganese [Mellor 12:187 1946-47]. Readily liquefied by compression. Contact between the liquid and water may result in vigorous or violent boiling and extremely rapid vaporization. If the water is hot an explosion may occur. Pressures may build to dangerous levels if the liquid contacts water in a closed container [Handling Chemicals Safely 1980]. Supports incandescent combustion of monocesium acetylide, monopotassium acetylide, cesium oxide, iron(II) oxide, tin oxide, and lead oxide [Mellor]. Ethylene oxide and SO2 can react violently in pyridine solution with pressurization if ethylene oxide is in excess (Nolan, 1983, Case History 51).
Belongs to the Following Reactive Group(s)
Potentially Incompatible Absorbents

Use caution: Liquids with this reactive group classification have been known to react with the absorbents listed below. More info about absorbents, including situations to watch out for...

Response Recommendations

Isolation and Evacuation - Isolation and evacuation distance recommendations from the Emergency Response Guidebook (ERG).

Firefighting - Response recommendations if the chemical is on fire (or near a fire).

Non-Fire Response - Response recommendations if the chemical isn't on fire (or near a fire).

Protective Clothing - Recommendations for protective gear.

Dupont Tychem® Suit Fabrics - A table of normalized breakthrough times for DuPont Tychem suit fabrics for the chemical, if available.

First Aid - Recommended first aid treatment for people exposed to the chemical.

List of data sources.
Isolation and Evacuation
Excerpt from GUIDE 125 [Gases - Corrosive]:

As an immediate precautionary measure, isolate spill or leak area for at least 100 meters (330 feet) in all directions.

SPILL: See ERG Tables 1 and 3 - Initial Isolation and Protective Action Distances on the UN/NA 1079 datasheet.

FIRE: If tank, rail car or tank truck is involved in a fire, ISOLATE for 1600 meters (1 mile) in all directions; also, consider initial evacuation for 1600 meters (1 mile) in all directions. (ERG, 2012)
Firefighting
Wear self-contained breathing apparatus and full protective clothing. Move container from fire area. Stay away from ends of tanks. Cool containers that are exposed to flames with water from the side until well after the fire is out. Isolate area until gas has dispersed. Keep unnecessary people away.

Not flammable. Extinguish fires with dry chemical, carbon dioxide, water spray, fog or foam. (EPA, 1998)
Non-Fire Response
Excerpt from GUIDE 125 [Gases - Corrosive]:

Fully encapsulating, vapor protective clothing should be worn for spills and leaks with no fire. Do not touch or walk through spilled material. Stop leak if you can do it without risk. If possible, turn leaking containers so that gas escapes rather than liquid. Prevent entry into waterways, sewers, basements or confined areas. Do not direct water at spill or source of leak. Use water spray to reduce vapors or divert vapor cloud drift. Avoid allowing water runoff to contact spilled material. Isolate area until gas has dispersed. (ERG, 2012)
Protective Clothing
Skin: Wear appropriate personal protective clothing to prevent skin from becoming frozen from contact with the liquid or from contact with vessels containing the liquid.

Eyes: Wear appropriate eye protection to prevent eye contact with the liquid that could result in burns or tissue damage from frostbite.

Wash skin: No recommendation is made specifying the need for washing the substance from the skin (either immediately or at the end of the work shift).

Remove: If chemical is in liquid form, work clothing that becomes wet or significantly contaminated should be removed and replaced.

Change: No recommendation is made specifying the need for the worker to change clothing after the work shift.

Provide: Quick drench facilities and/or eyewash fountains should be provided within the immediate work area for emergency use where there is any possibility of exposure to liquids that are extremely cold or rapidly evaporating. (NIOSH, 2003)
DuPont Tychem® Suit Fabrics
Tychem® Fabric Legend
QC = Tychem QC
SL = Tychem SL
TF = Tychem F
TP = Tychem ThermoPro
C3 = Tychem CPF 3
BR = Tychem BR
LV = Tychem LV
RC = Tychem Responder® CSM
TK = Tychem TK
RF = Tychem Reflector®
Testing Details
Permeation data obtained per ASTM F739. Normalized breakthrough times (the time at which the permeation rate is equal to 0.1 µg/cm2/min) reported in minutes. All liquid chemicals have been tested between approximately 20°C and 27°C unless otherwise stated. All chemicals have been tested at a concentration of greater than 95% unless otherwise stated. Chemical warfare agents (Lewisite, Sarin, Soman, Sulfur Mustard, Tabun and VX Nerve Agent) have been tested at 22°C and 50% relative humidity per military standard MIL-STD-282.
Normalized Breakthrough Times (in Minutes)
Chemical CAS Number State QC SL TF TP C3 BR LV RC TK RF
Sulfur dioxide 7446-09-5 Vapor imm. >480 38* 38* >480 >480 >480 >480 >480
> indicates greater than.
"imm." indicates immediate; having a normalized breakthrough time of 10 minutes or less.
* indicates actual breakthrough time; normalized breakthrough time is not available.
A blank cell indicates the fabric has not been tested. The fabric may or may not offer barrier.

Special Warnings from DuPont

  1. Serged and bound seams are degraded by some hazardous liquid chemicals, such as strong acids, and should not be worn when these chemicals are present.
  2. CAUTION: This information is based upon technical data that DuPont believes to be reliable. It is subject to revision as additional knowledge and experience are gained. DuPont makes no guarantee of results and assumes no obligation or liability...
    ... in connection with this information. It is the user's responsibility to determine the level of toxicity and the proper personal protective equipment needed. The information set forth herein reflects laboratory performance of fabrics, not complete garments, under controlled conditions. It is intended for informational use by persons having technical skill for evaluation under their specific end-use conditions, at their own discretion and risk. Anyone intending to use this information should first verify that the garment selected is suitable for the intended use. In many cases, seams and closures have shorter breakthrough times and higher permeation rates than the fabric. Please contact DuPont for specific data. If fabric becomes torn, abraded or punctured, or if seams or closures fail, or if attached gloves, visors, etc. are damaged, end user should discontinue use of garment to avoid potential exposure to chemical. Since conditions of use are outside our control, we make no warranties, express or implied, including, without limitation, no warranties of merchantability or fitness for a particular use and assume no liability in connection with any use of this information. This information is not intended as a license to operate under or a recommendation to infringe any patent or technical information of DuPont or others covering any material or its use.

(DuPont, 2013)

First Aid
Note: Persons with asthma, subnormal pulmonary function, or cardiovascular disease are at greater risk.

Signs and Symptoms of Acute Sulfur Dioxide Exposure: Sulfur dioxide may irritate the eyes and respiratory tract. Signs and symptoms of acute exposure to sulfur dioxide may be severe and include coughing, choking, dyspnea (shortness of breath), sneezing, wheezing, and chest discomfort. Upper airway edema (swelling) or obstruction, bronchoconstriction, pneumonia, pulmonary edema, and respiratory paralysis may occur. Fatigue may be noted. Gastrointestinal effects may include nausea, vomiting, and abdominal pain. Cyanosis (blue tint to skin and mucous membranes) may be noted following exposure to sulfur dioxide.

Emergency Life-Support Procedures: Acute exposure to sulfur dioxide may require decontamination and life support for the victims. Emergency personnel should wear protective clothing appropriate to the type and degree of contamination. Air-purifying or supplied-air respiratory equipment should also be worn, as necessary. Rescue vehicles should carry supplies such as plastic sheeting and disposable plastic bags to assist in preventing spread of contamination.

Inhalation Exposure:
1. Move victims to fresh air. Emergency personnel should avoid self-exposure to sulfur dioxide.
2. Evaluate vital signs including pulse and respiratory rate, and note any trauma. If no pulse is detected, provide CPR. If not breathing, provide artificial respiration. If breathing is labored, administer oxygen or other respiratory support.
3. Obtain authorization and/or further instructions from the local hospital for administration of an antidote or performance of other invasive procedures.
4. Transport to a health care facility.

Dermal/Eye Exposure:
1. Remove victims from exposure. Emergency personnel should avoid self- exposure to sulfur dioxide.
2. Evaluate vital signs including pulse and respiratory rate, and note any trauma. If no pulse is detected, provide CPR. If not breathing, provide artificial respiration. If breathing is labored, administer oxygen or other respiratory support.
3. Remove contaminated clothing as soon as possible.
4. If eye exposure has occurred, eyes must be flushed with lukewarm water for at least 15 minutes.
5. Wash exposed skin areas with soap and water.
6. Obtain authorization and/or further instructions from the local hospital for administration of an antidote or performance of other invasive procedures.
7. Transport to a health care facility.

Ingestion Exposure: No information is available. (EPA, 1998)

Physical Properties

This section contains physical properties, flammability limits, and toxic thresholds for this chemical (see definitions of each property). More property data is available for common chemicals.

See also the Levels of Concern guide for information on AEGLs, ERPGs, PACs, and IDLH values.

List of data sources.
Chemical Formula:
  • SO2
Flash Point: data unavailable
Lower Explosive Limit (LEL): data unavailable
Upper Explosive Limit (UEL): data unavailable
Autoignition Temperature: Not flammable (USCG, 1999)
Melting Point: -98.9 ° F (EPA, 1998)
Vapor Pressure: 2432 mm Hg at 68.0 ° F (EPA, 1998)
Vapor Density (Relative to Air): 2.26 (EPA, 1998)
Specific Gravity: 1.434 (EPA, 1998)
Boiling Point: 14 ° F at 760.0 mm Hg (EPA, 1998)
Molecular Weight: 64.07 (EPA, 1998)
Water Solubility: 10 % (NIOSH, 2003)
IDLH: 100 ppm (NIOSH, 2003)

AEGLs (Acute Exposure Guideline Levels)

Final AEGLs for Sulfur Dioxide (7446-09-5)
Exposure Period AEGL-1 AEGL-2 AEGL-3
10 minutes 0.2 ppm 0.75 ppm 30 ppm
30 minutes 0.2 ppm 0.75 ppm 30 ppm
60 minutes 0.2 ppm 0.75 ppm 30 ppm
4 hours 0.2 ppm 0.75 ppm 19 ppm
8 hours 0.2 ppm 0.75 ppm 9.6 ppm
(NAC/NRC, 2013)

ERPGs (Emergency Response Planning Guidelines)

Chemical ERPG-1 ERPG-2 ERPG-3
Sulfur Dioxide (7446-09-5) 0.3 ppm star-in-circle icon indicates that odor should be detectable near ERPG-1. 3 ppm 25 ppm
star-in-circle icon indicates that odor should be detectable near ERPG-1.
(AIHA, 2013)

PACs (Protective Action Criteria)

Chemical PAC-1 PAC-2 PAC-3
Sulfur dioxide (7446-09-5) 0.2 ppm 0.75 ppm 30 ppm
(SCAPA, 2012)

Regulatory Information

This section contains regulatory information from the Title III Consolidated List of Lists (see details about each regulatory field).

List of data sources.
Regulatory Name CAS Number/
313 Category Code
EPCRA 302
EHS TPQ
EPCRA 304
EHS RQ
CERCLA RQ EPCRA 313
TRI
RCRA
Code
CAA 112(r)
RMP TQ
Sulfur dioxide 7446-09-5 500 500
Sulfur dioxide (anhydrous) 7446-09-5 500 500 5000

(EPA List of Lists, 2012)

Alternate Chemical Names

This section provides a listing of alternate names for this chemical, including trade names and synonyms.