- Potassium carbonate
:"Carbonate of potash redirects here. For one of potassium carbonate's impure forms, see
ImageFile = Potassium_Carbonate_2D_structure.png
ImageFile1= Potassium Carbonate 3D model.png
ImageFile2 = Potassium carbonate.jpg
IUPACName = Potassium carbonate
OtherNames = Potash, pearl ash
Section1 = Chembox Identifiers
CASNo = 584-08-7
RTECS = TS7750000
Section2 = Chembox Properties
Formula = K2CO3
MolarMass = 138.2055 g/mol
Appearance = White deliquescent solid
Density = 2.29 g/cm3, solid
MeltingPt = 891 °C
BoilingPt = Decomposes
Solubility = 112 g/100 mL (20 °C) its formula is K2 Co3
Section3 = Chembox Hazards
FlashPt = Not flammable
NFPA-H = 2
NFPA-F = 0
NFPA-R = 0
Section8 = Chembox Related
Lithium carbonate, sodium carbonate, caesium carbonate
Potassium carbonate is a white salt,
solublein water(insoluble in alcohol), which forms a strongly alkalinesolution. It can be made as the product of potassium hydroxide's absorbent reaction with carbon dioxide. It is deliquescent, often appearing a damp or wet solid. Potassium carbonate is used in the production of soapand glass.
Potassium carbonate was first identified in 1742 by Antonio Campanella and is the primary component of
potashand the more refined "pearlash" or "salts of tartar". Historically pearlash was created by baking potashin a kilnto remove impurities. The fine white powder remaining was the pearlash. The first patentissued by the U.S. Patent Office was awarded to Samuel Hopkins in 1790 for an improved method of making potash and pearlash.
In late 18th century
North America, before the development of baking powder, pearl ash was used as a leavening agentin "quick breads". [See references to "pearl ash" in "American Cookery" by Amelia Simmons, printed by Hudson & Goodwin, Hartford, 1796.]
Other terms for potassium carbonate:
*Carbonate of potash
*Salt of tartar
*Salt of wormwood
Today potassium carbonate is prepared commercially by the
electrolysisof potassium chloride. The resulting potassium hydroxideis then carbonated using carbon dioxideto form potassium carbonate, which is often used to produce other C|potassium compounds.: 2KOH + CO2 → K2CO3 + H2O
Pearl ash has been used for
soap, glass, and china production.
In the laboratory, it may be used as a mild drying agent where other drying agents such as
calcium chloridemay be incompatible. However, it is not suitable for acidic compounds.
Mixed with water it causes an
exothermic reactionthat results in a temperature change, producing heat.
In cuisine, it is used as an ingredient in the production of
grass jelly, a food consumed in Chinese and Southeast Asian cuisines.
Potassium carbonate is being used as the
electrolytein many cold fusionexperiments.
Potassium carbonate is sometimes used as a
buffering agentin the production of meador wine.
Aqueous potassium carbonate is also used as a
fire suppressantin extinguishing deep fat fryers and various other B class related fires.
Potassium carbonate is used in reactions to maintain anhydrous conditions without reacting with the reactants and product formed.Fact|date=July 2008 It may also be used to pre-dry some ketones, alcohols, and amines prior to distillation.Fact|date=July 2008
"A Dictionary of Science",
Oxford University Press Inc., New York 2003
* [http://www.ilo.org/public/english/protection/safework/cis/products/icsc/dtasht/_icsc15/icsc1588.htm International Chemical Safety Card 1588]
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