Potassium Osmate

Potassium osmate (chemically known as potassium tetrahydroxodioxoosmate(VI)) is an inorganic compound made of the precious metal osmium, the alkali metal potassium and oxygen. Potassium osmate is a salt with a violet powdery appearance and is soluble in water. It is diamagnetic and contains osmium in the sixth (VI) oxidation state. The molar mass is 368.42 grams per mole.

The compound is mainly used as a catalyst for asymmetric dihydroxylation reactions, where a high degree of enantioselectivity is needed.

How can I purchase potassium osmate?

Heraeus offers potassium osmate both in small quantities for research projects and in large quantities for industrial applications. With our decades of experience in the processing and manufacturing of osmium compounds, we are able to offer high quality potassium osmate, packaged to your requirements and shipped anywhere in the world.

If you are interested in purchasing our potassium osmate in larger quantities, please use the request for quote function within our shop. Our experts will reach out to you to discuss your exact requirements. Our mission is not only to offer custom solutions but to consult and work together with our clients so they can achieve the best results possible.

If you would like to receive samples of our potassium osmate quickly and easily, please visit our shop as well. There you can also view our safety data sheet and product specifications for all our chemical compounds and products.

Chemical and industrial application of potassium osmate

Potassium osmate is mainly utilized as a reagent for the chemical addition of hydroxyl groups (OH) to C-C double bonds – a process known as oxidative hydroxylation.

In particular, potassium osmate is used together with (DHQD)2-PHAL or (DHQ)2-PHAL for enantioselective dihydroxylation, known as Sharpless dihydroxylation. This process produces a high excess of one diol enantiomer, allowing for ‘tailor-made’ compounds, limiting unwanted side reactions and optimizing their chemical performance.

For this reason, potassium osmate is intensively researched as a chemical catalyst for the synthesis of fine chemical compounds, such as active pharmaceutical ingredients (APIs).

A particular example where the osmium itself is used as part of an API is the application of potassium osmate in the synthesis of a novel cancer drug, FY26. FY26 is currently being
 investigated for potential clinical application due to is high degree of specificity and targeted mechanism of action.