Lithium compounds: lithium iodide

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The lithium in lithium iodide formally is in the oxidation state 1.

Crystal structure of lithium iodide

Lithium iodide

  • Formula as often written: LiI
  • Hill system formula: I1Li1
  • CAS registry number: [10377-51-2]
  • Formula weight: 133.845
  • Class: iodide


  • lithium iodide
  • lithium(I) iodide

Physical properties

  • Colour: white
  • Appearance: crystalline solid
  • Melting point: 560°C; 469°C
  • Boiling point: 1171°C
  • Density: 4060 kg m-3


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Element analysis

Element percentages for the elements in lithium iodide
Element %
I 94.81
Li 5.19


One way to make lithium iodide is to react the hydroxide with hydroiodic acid. The resulting salt can then be purified by recrystallization.

LiOH(aq) + HI(aq) → LiI(aq) + H2O(l)

Lithium(I) iodide can also be made by the neutralization of lithium(I) carbonate with hydroiodic acid. The resulting salt can then be purified by recrystallization.

Li2(CO3)(aq) + 2HI(aq) → 2LiI(aq) + H2O(l) + CO2(g)

While not a normal route of preparation because of the expense, lithium metal reacts vigorously with all the halogens to form lithium halides. So, it burns with iodine, I2, to form lithium(I) iodide, LiI.

2Li(s) + I2(s) → 2LiI(s)

Solid state structure

  • Geometry of lithium: 6 coordinate: octahedral
  • Prototypical structure: NaCl (rock salt)

Crystal structure of lithium iodide

Isotope pattern

What follows is the calculated isotope pattern for the LiI unit with the most intense ion set to 100%.

Formula: Li1I1

mass  %
133   8.1 ____
134 100.0 __________________________________________________


The data on these compounds pages are assembled and adapted from the primary literature and several other sources including the following.

  • R.T. Sanderson in Chemical Periodicity, Reinhold, New York, USA, 1960.
  • N.N. Greenwood and A. Earnshaw in Chemistry of the Elements, 2nd edition, Butterworth, UK, 1997.
  • F.A. Cotton, G. Wilkinson, C.A. Murillo, and M. Bochmann, in Advanced Inorganic Chemistry, John Wiley & Sons, 1999.
  • A.F. Trotman-Dickenson, (ed.) in Comprehensive Inorganic Chemistry, Pergamon, Oxford, UK, 1973.
  • R.W.G. Wyckoff, in Crystal Structures, volume 1, Interscience, John Wiley & Sons, 1963.
  • A.R.West in Basic solid state chemistry Chemistry, John Wiley & Sons, 1999.
  • A.F. Wells in Structural inorganic chemistry, 4th edition, Oxford, UK, 1975.
  • J.D.H. Donnay, (ed.) in Crystal data determinative tables, ACA monograph number 5, American Crystallographic Association, USA, 1963.
  • D.R. Lide, (ed.) in Chemical Rubber Company handbook of chemistry and physics, CRC Press, Boca Raton, Florida, USA, 77th edition, 1996.
  • J.W. Mellor in A comprehensive treatise on inorganic and theoretical chemistry, volumes 1-16, Longmans, London, UK, 1922-1937.
  • J.E. Macintyre (ed.) in Dictionary of inorganic compounds, volumes 1-3, Chapman & Hall, London, UK, 1992.

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lithium atomic number