What is Phosphoric Acid?

Phosphoric Acid Uses
Phosphoric acid, also called orthophosphoric acid, (H3PO4), the most important oxygen acid of phosphorus, used to make phosphate salts for fertilizers. It is also used in dental cement, in the preparation of albumin derivatives, and in the sugar and textile industries. It serves as an acidic, fruit-like flavoring in food products.

Pure phosphoric acid is a crystalline solid (melting point 42.35° C, or 108.2° F); in less concentrated form it is a colorless syrupy liquid. The crude acid is prepared from phosphate rock, while acid of higher purity is made from white phosphorus.

Phosphoric acid also referred to as phosphoric(V) acid or orthophosphoric acid is one of the popular and most used acids. As such, the raw form of this acid is extracted from phosphate rocks, whereas the purer form is produced industrially from white phosphorus. Pure phosphoric acid is usually in a crystalline solid-state and in less concentrated form. Generally, it is a colorless, syrupy, odorless, and non-volatile liquid. Phosphoric acid which is also a mineral acid is represented by the formula H3PO4 and it contains one atom of phosphorus, four atoms of oxygen, and three atoms of hydrogen.

Uses of Phosphoric Acid

Orthophosphoric acid is one of the important chemicals which has myriad uses in several industries, agriculture, and products that we use in our daily lives. In any case, here we will look at some popular uses of phosphoric acid.
Removal of Rust
In Food and Beverage
Personal care
Used in Agriculture
Other Uses
Phosphoric Acid used in the removal of rust

Among the various types of acids, phosphoric acid is used commonly in the removal of rust from metals like iron, steel, etc. Usually, when this acid is applied reacts with the rust and converts the reddish-brown iron typically ferric oxide (iron oxide) to a black-colored compound which is now ferric phosphate. This black ferric phosphate substance is easily removed

Phosphoric Acid used in food and beverage

Phosphoric acid is often used as a food additive. This acid acts as an acidity regulator in foods like jams, cereal bars, processed meats, cheese, etc. In the beverage industry, phosphoric acid is used as an acidulant. It helps keep a check on fungi and bacteria formation. It also adds to the taste of these drinks. However, there is an ongoing debate about the health effects and benefits of this acid.

Phosphoric Acid used in personal care

Phosphoric Acid is quite necessary for the production of a wide variety of personal care products. Some of them include cleaning products, bath products, fragrances, hair care products, and dyes, nail products, makeup, and other skincare products. On the other hand, phosphoric acid is also used in controlling the pH level of these products.

Phosphoric Acid used in agriculture

Some reports have suggested that almost 80 percent of the phosphoric acid that is produced is used in the production of fertilizer. Phosphoric acid is also used as an additive and flavoring agent in animal or poultry feed.

Phosphoric Acid used in pharmaceutical

This acid is mostly used as an intermediate in pharmaceutical. One of the main areas that phosphoric acid is used is in dentistry. It is used as an etching solution and is usually used to clean the teeth. Other uses of phosphoric acid include teeth whiteners or mouth washing liquids. Phosphoric acid is also commonly used in anti-nausea medicines.

Other Uses of Phosphoric Acid

There are also few other uses of this acid. Phosphoric acid is used as an electrolyte in fuel cells or in oxyhydrogen generators. Phosphoric acid is also used to make synthetic detergents and treatment of water and metals.

It is also used to remove mineral deposits, cement smears, and hard water stains in the construction industry. It can act as a chemical oxidizing agent to produce activated carbon products.

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