Barium is a silvery metal with a relatively large ion concentration. It is insoluble in water and is slightly soluble in concentrated sulfuric acid. When heated in a Bunsen burner, barium salts produce a yellow green flame.
Barium has many uses, including as an additive to cast iron and as an unwanted gas remover for vacuum tubes. It also acts as a component of a number of anticorrosive compounds. In particular, it is an efficient oxidizing agent, converting both aromatic and aliphatic thiols to disulfides.
Barium chromate is a well known oxidizing agent. This substance, which contains barium and chromium ions, is a useful ingredient in delay fuses and metal primers. If you have the means, you may want to take your barium chromate to a hazardous waste company.
Besides being an oxidizing agent, barium chromate is also a good carrier for chromium ions. The aforementioned ingredient is most commonly used in the aerospace industry as an anticorrosive compound. Also, it is a major component in a number of other substances, including metal primers and delay fuses.
On the downside, this substance is a nasty one, as it can cause cancer and other genetic defects in humans and animals. The EU-OEL (European Union OEL) is calculated at 0.005 mg/m3 as TWA. It is also a known carcinogen, as it has been linked to kidney and lung cancer. Additionally, the chemical can cause respiratory irritation. While it isn’t dangerous for recreational use, prolonged or repeated exposure can have long-term effects on the body.