- Aluminium sulfate
Name = Aluminium sulfate
ImageFile = Aluminium sulfate.jpg
ImageName = Aluminium sulfate hexadecahydrate
IUPACName = Aluminium sulfate
OtherNames = Cake alum
Section1 = Chembox Identifiers
CASNo = 10043-01-3
EINECS = 233-135-0
RTECS = BD1700000
Section2 = Chembox Properties
Formula = Al2(SO4)3·16H2O
MolarMass = 342.15 g/mol as anhydrous salt
Appearance = white crystalline solid
Density = 2.672 g/cm³, solid
Solubility = 870 g/L
MeltingPt = 770 °C "decomp."
Section3 = Chembox Structure
Section8 = Chembox Related
Gallium sulfate Magnesium sulfate
OtherCpds = "See"
Aluminium sulfate, written as Al2(SO4)3 or Al2O12S3, is a widely used industrial chemical. It is sometimes incorrectly referred to as
alum, as it is closely related to this group of compounds. It occurs naturally as a rare mineralmillosevichite, found i.e. in volcanic environments and on burning coal-mining waste dumps. It is frequently used as a flocculating agent in the purification of drinking water [cite web | last = Global Health and Education Foundation | title = Conventional Coagulation-Flocculation-Sedimentation | work = Safe Drinking Water is Essential | publisher = National Academy of Sciences | date = 2007 | url = http://drinking-water.org/html/en/Treatment/Coagulation-Flocculation-technologies.html | accessdate = 2007-12-01 ] [cite journal | author=Kvech S, Edwards M | title=Solubility controls on aluminum in drinking water at relatively low and high pH | journal=WATER RESEARCH | volume=36 | issue=17 | year=2002 | pages=4356–4368 | pmid=12420940 | doi=10.1016/S0043-1354(02)00137-9 ] and waste water treatment plants, and also in paper manufacturing.
Aluminium sulfate is rarely, if ever, encountered as the anhydrous salt. It forms a number of different
hydrates, of which the hexadecahydrate Al2(SO4)3•16H2O and octadecahydrate Al2(SO4)3•18H2O are the most common. Heptadecahydrate, which formula can be written as [Al(H2O)6] 2(SO4)3•5H2O, occurs naturally as the mineral alunogen.
It can also be very effective as a
molluscicide, killing spanish slugs. [http://www.trivenichemical.com/sulphate.html]
Aluminium sulfate may be made by dissolving
aluminium hydroxide, Al(OH)3, in sulfuric acid, H2SO4:
:2 Al(OH)3 + 3 H2SO4 + 3 H2O → Al2(SO4)3·6H2O
Aluminium Sulfate is used in
water purificationand as a mordantin dyeing and printing textiles. In water purification, it causes impurities to coagulate which are removed as the particulate settles to the bottom of the container or more easily filtered. This process is called coagulationor flocculation.
When dissolved in a large amount of neutral or slightly-alkaline water, aluminium sulfate produces a gelatinous precipitate of
aluminium hydroxide, Al(OH)3. In dyeing and printing cloth, the gelatinous precipitate helps the dye adhere to the clothing fibers by rendering the pigment insoluble.
Aluminium sulfate is sometimes used to reduce the
pHof garden soil, as it hydrolyzes to form the aluminium hydroxide precipitate and a dilute sulfuric acidsolution.
Aluminium sulfate is the active ingredient of some
antiperspirants; however, beginning in 2005 the US Food and Drug Administrationno longer recognized it as a wetness reducer.
Aluminium sulfate is usually found in
baking powder, where there is controversy over its use due to concern regarding the safety of adding aluminum to the diet.
In construction industry it is used as waterproofing agent and accelerator in
concrete. Another use is a foaming agent in fire fighting foam.
It is also used in styptic pencils, and pain relief from stings and bites; it is the active ingredient in popular pain relief products such as Stingose.
*cite book | author=Pauling, Linus | title=General Chemistry | location=W.H. Freeman | publisher=San Francisco | year=1970 | id=ISBN 0-486-65622-5
* [http://www.ilo.org/public/english/protection/safework/cis/products/icsc/dtasht/_icsc11/icsc1191.htm International Chemical Safety Card 1191]
* [http://www.cdc.gov/niosh/npg/npgd0024.html NIOSH Pocket Guide to Chemical Hazards]
* [http://www.inchem.org/documents/jecfa/jecmono/v12je04.html WHO Food Additive Series No. 12]
* [http://www.agr.gc.ca/pfra/water/alhealth_e.htm Aluminum and health]
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