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Calcium Chloride Formula – Structure, Properties, Uses, Sample Questions

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  • Last Updated : 31 Mar, 2022
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Calcium chloride was discovered in the 15th century, but until the late 18th century, it got little attention or research. Because the ammonia-soda process for producing soda ash was not operational until after the ammonia-soda method for producing soda ash was operational, all of the early work was done with laboratory manufactured samples.

What is Calcium Chloride?

Calcium chloride is an ionic compound with the formula CaCl2. It’s also known as calcium chloride anhydrous or calcium dichloride. It’s an ionic substance made up of chlorine and calcium. At room temperature, it is a crystalline solid white. Because it is very soluble in water, it is hygroscopic. Its enthalpy change of solution is extremely high, and it has no odour. This chemical is frequently used for dust control and deicing.

Structure of Calcium Chloride

The solitary calcium cation and the two chloride anions form two ionic connections in calcium chloride molecules. The structure of calcium chloride molecules is depicted in the diagram to the right. The charge of the calcium cation is +2, while the charge of each chloride anion is -1. As a result, the molecule has a neutral electrical charge.

Calcium Chloride

Preparation of Calcium Chloride

Follow the steps given below to manufacture calcium chloride:

  1. Wearing gloves, place limestones in a beaker until it is filled to a fourth of their original capacity.
  2. Now, approximately 1/4th of a beaker of HCl (hydrochloric acid) should be added to the limestone.
  3. As the hydrochloric acid dissolves the limestone, bubbles form. Gently mix the contents of the beaker now, and keep an eye on the reaction to make sure it’s finished. Add a little additional limestone if all of the limestones have completely dissolved in it.
  4. Then, as soon as the solution stops bubbling, filter off the particles by pouring it through filter paper.
  5. The calcium chloride solution in the second beaker should be warmed. After the water evaporates, the solid calcium chloride remains.

Calcium Chloride Solutions

Calcium chloride is used to make solutions with relatively high densities since it is extremely soluble in water. The oil and gas drilling industries typically take advantage of these high densities while completing or reworking wells.

The densities of calcium chloride solution at various concentrations and temperatures have been determined. The viscosity of calcium chloride solutions is a significant feature in terms of engineering design and application of such solutions to flow through porous media.

In the 1980s, numerous research on the thermodynamics of calcium chloride solutions were published. Many of these were aimed at validating and expanding the Pitzer equations for determining activity coefficients and other parameters in high-ionic-strength electrolyte solutions. Calcium chloride is commercially manufactured using a variety of processes, including the refining of natural brines, the reaction of calcium hydroxide with ammonium chloride in the manufacturing of Solvay soda ash, and the reaction of hydrochloric acid with calcium carbonate. Some substances have the ability to absorb moisture from the air when exposed to them. This feature is shared by anhydrous calcium chloride, which is commonly employed as a drying agent.

Uses of Calcium Chloride

  1. It is commonly used as an additive in plastics, wastewater treatment plants, and blast furnaces to improve processes and features.
  2. It is also used as a de-icing agent to lower the freezing point of water.
  3. Furthermore, calcium chloride is very effective at preventing ice formation on road surfaces and is thus employed as a de-icer. It consumes the most calcium chloride, however, by lowering the freezing point of water, which inhibits ice formation and is also used to de-ice.
  4. It is also utilized in dehumidifiers, which are used in both home and industrial settings.
  5. It has been discovered that the typical calcium chloride intake in food ranges between 160 and 345mg per day.
  6. It is used in aquariums to introduce bioavailable calcium to calcium carbonate-shelled creatures such as mollusks and cnidarians.
  7. It’s also used to make canned veggies and a caviar alternative out of fruit juices or vegetables. It is utilized as an electrolyte in sports drinks and other liquids, including water.
  8. Calcium chloride is used to give pickles a salty flavor.
  9. There are numerous applications for calcium chloride, ranging from beer brewing to cheesemaking. 

How Calcium Chloride is used as a water treating agent?

Water treatment employs the use of calcium chloride. It is also used in bottled water, but it is most commonly employed in wastewater treatment to remove unwanted contaminants. Calcium is recognized as a significant predictor of water utilization as well as a pH stabilizer that imparts a pleasant taste to water. Calcium chloride, on the other hand, is employed in oily waste streams in the petroleum, metallurgy, laundry, textile, and food processing sectors. Oil droplets float to the surface as a result of this. It is eliminated in the final stage by skimming. 

Health Hazards

Because this chemical is irritating, it must be handled with gloves. Although it is rather safe to handle, it interacts exothermically with water and can cause tongue or esophageal burning if swallowed. Calcium chloride is also used to treat hyperkalemia, hypermagnesemia, and calcium-channel blocker overdose.

Sample Questions

Question 1: What is calcium chloride commonly used for?

Answer: 

Calcium chloride is a good desiccant as a hygroscopic agent for removing dissolved moisture from liquids, and it is appropriate for use in food packing to increase dryness and reduce spoiling.

Question 2: What happens when calcium chloride is exposed to air?

Answer: 

Because calcium carbide is a fragile material, when exposed to air, it absorbs water from the atmosphere. When exposed to the sun, anhydrous calcium chloride absorbs heat from the atmosphere and turns into a colourless solution.

Question 3: Is calcium electrically conductive?

Answer: 

Calcium is more difficult to cut than lead, although it can be done with some effort. Although calcium is a lesser electrical conductor than copper or aluminium by weight, it is a better mass conductor than both due to its extremely low density.

Question 4: What is calcium chloride made of?

Answer: 

Calcium chloride is a naturally occurring calcium-derived salt. It is a solid white that can also be created synthetically.

Question 5: Is calcium chloride a natural product?

Answer:

Natural calcium chloride contains trace amounts of sodium chloride and potassium chloride, which are carried from the brine’s natural source. Almost all food-grade calcium chloride applications are covered by this.

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