sulfuric acid



We explain what sulfuric acid is, what its formula is and its various uses. Also, the risks and properties of this compound.

The sulfuric acid molecule is made up of hydrogen, oxygen, and sulfur.

What is sulfuric acid?

Sulfuric acid is a chemical compound highly corrosive, generally obtained in laboratories from sulfur dioxide (SO2). It's one of the chemical products generated and used in the world since it has numerous applications in the industry and in the synthesis of other chemical materials.

The molecule Sulfuric acid is composed of hydrogen, oxygen and sulfur, arranged in a pyramidal fashion with sulfur located in the center and oxygen at the vertices. It is known as tetraoxosulfuric acid (VI), hydrogen tetraoxosulfate (VI), oil of vitriol, liquor of vitriol, or spirit of vitriol.

These last names are due to the way it was discovered in the medieval European, when alchemists obtained it from crystals of sulfate salts, a material known as vitriol, from the Latin vitreus ("crystal").

Vitriol was supposed to be the most important chemical in the world, which could be used as a philosopher's stone. There were blue or Roman vitriol (copper sulfate II), white vitriol (zinc sulfate), green vitriol (iron sulfate II), red vitriol (cobalt sulfate II) and vitriol of Mars (iron sulfate III).

Currently sulfuric acid is available in numerous presentations and degrees of purity.

Sulfuric acid formula

The chemical formula Sulfuric acid's standard is H2SO4, which means it has two atoms hydrogen, one sulfur and four oxygen, arranged in a pyramidal fashion with the sulfur located in the center.

Uses of sulfuric acid

Sulfuric acid is very important in the fertilizer industry.

Sulfuric acid is widely used in chemical industry and petrochemicals, as part of obtaining other Acids and bases.

It is particularly important in the fertilizer industry, in the refining of Petroleum, in the treatment of steel and in the manufacture of explosives, detergents and plastics.

It is also widely used in the wood and paper industry, in many processes of the textile industry and in the production of batteries (although in a proportion mild).

In many countries its commercialization is given under strict surveillance, since it is part of the chemicals commonly used in the manufacture of cocaine.

Sulfuric acid risks

Sulfuric acid requires care in its handling and storage, since its contact with the skin, with mucous membranes (by inhalation or by ingestion) or with other parts of the body can cause irritation, burns or even total destruction of tissues, depending on the the acid concentration. Repeated, low-concentration exposures can cause dermatitis or even cancer.

Although it is not flammable on its own, in contact with metals it produces hydrogen, which it is. Your contact with the Water since a reaction highly exothermic which can lead to fires or acid splashes (if water is added to the acid).

Sulfuric acid properties

Sulfuric acid has a melting point of 10 ° C and a boiling point of 337 ° C.

Sulfuric acid is an oily, colorless liquid with a particular odor, depending on its concentration. His melting point is 10 ºC, its Boiling point of 337 ºC and its density it is 1.84 g / cm³. It is miscible with water, but generates heat, given its enormous dehydrating effect, also on hydrocarbon molecules (such as sucrose).

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