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Sodium Formate Formula – Structure, Properties, Uses, Sample Questions

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  • Last Updated : 23 May, 2022
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Sodium is a highly reactive alkali metal with the symbol Na and has the atomic number 11. The 6th most bountiful component in the Earth’s crust is sodium and it exists in various minerals like feldspars and rock salt (NaCl). Many salts of sodium are profoundly water-solvent: sodium particles have been drained by the activity of water from the Earth’s minerals overages, and consequently, sodium and chlorine are the most well-known disintegrated components by weight in the seas.

What is Sodium Formate?

Sodium Formate is a white powderish substance that tends to absorb moisture from the atmosphere and become liquid. The IUPAC nomenclature of Sodium Formate is Sodium methanoate and it’s also called Formic acid and Sodium hydrocarbon dioxide. The formula of Sodium Formate is HCOONa.

Structure of Sodium Formate 

Structure of Sodium  Formate

Preparation of Sodium Formate 

  • In the laboratory, sodium formate can be prepared by neutralizing formic acid with sodium carbonate. It can also be obtained by reacting chloroform with an alcoholic solution of sodium hydroxide.

CHCl3 + 4 NaOH → HCOONa + 3 NaCl + 2 H2O

  • Sodium formate is prepared by retaining carbon monoxide under pressure in strong sodium hydroxide at 130 °C and 6-8 bar pressure for industrial purposes.

CO + NaOH → HCOONa

  • It can also be produced by reacting Sodium Hydroxide with Chloral Hydrate.

C2HCl3(OH)2 + NaOH → CHCl3 + HCOONa + H2O

Physical properties of Sodium Formate:

  • Sodium formate has a molecular weight of 68 g/mol.
  • Density is equal to 1.92g/cm3.
  • The melting point of Sodium formate is 253° C.
  • Sodium formate smells a little like Formic acid.
  • Sodium formate has a refractive index of 1.371.
  • The formula of Sodium formate is HCOONa.

Chemical Properties of Sodium Formate:

  • Sodium oxalate and Hydrogen are formed when Sodium Formate is heated and the formed odium Oxalate can be further decomposed into Sodium Carbonate on further heating and Carbon monoxide gas is released.
  • Sodium Formate is a salt of strong base(NaOH) and weak acid(HCOOH).
  • Formic Acid and Sodium Formate can be used as a buffer.

Uses of Sodium Formate

  1. Sodium formate can be used as a buffering agent.
  2. Sodium formate is used as a non-corrosive agent for deicing airport runways.
  3. Sodium Formate is used in Printing processes.
  4. Sodium Formate is also used in pigmenting or cloth dyeing industries.

Sample Questions 

Question 1: Write a short note on Sodium Formate.

Answer:

Sodium Formate is a white powderish substance that tends to absorb moisture from the atmosphere and become liquid. The IUPAC nomenclature of Sodium Formate is Sodium methanoate and it’s also called Formic acid and Sodium hydrocarbon dioxide. The formula of Sodium Formate is HCOONa.

Question 2: Justify the buffering action of Sodium Formate.

Answer:

Sodium Formate is a salt of strong base(Sodium Hydroxide, NaOH) and weak acid (Formic Acid, HCOOH). Hence it can be used as a buffer in maintaining pH.

Question 3: What are the health hazards caused due to Sodium Formate?

Answer:

Sodium Formate is unsafe when gulped or breathed in. It leads to irritation of eyes, respiratory pipe, and skin.

Question 4: Mention the uses of Sodium formate.

Answer:

  • Sodium formate can be used as a buffering agent.
  • Sodium formate is used as a non-corrosive agent for deicing airport runways.
  • Sodium Formate is used in Printing processes.
  • Sodium Formate is also used in pigmenting or cloth dyeing industries.

Question 5: How is Sodium Formate prepared in laboratories?

Answer:

In the laboratory, sodium formate can be prepared by neutralizing formic acid with sodium carbonate. It can also be obtained by reacting chloroform with an alcoholic solution of sodium hydroxide.

CHCl3 + 4 NaOH → HCOONa + 3 NaCl + 2 H2O

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