Aluminium hydroxide

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Aluminium hydroxide
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Names
Preferred IUPAC name
Aluminium hydroxide
Systematic IUPAC name
Aluminium(3+) trioxidanide
Other names
Aluminic acid

Aluminic hydroxide
Aluminium(III) hydroxide
Aluminium hydroxide
Aluminum trihydroxide
Hydrated alumina

Orthoaluminic acid

Contents

Identifiers
3D model (JSmol)
ChEBI
ChEMBL
ChemSpider
DrugBank
ECHA InfoCard 100.040.433
KEGG
PubChem CID
RTECS number
  • BD0940000
UNII
Properties [1] [2]
Al(OH)3
Molar mass 78.00 g/mol
AppearanceWhite amorphous powder
Density 2.42 g/cm3, solid
Melting point 300 °C (572 °F; 573 K)
0.0001 g/100 mL
3×10−34
Solubility soluble in acids and alkalis
Acidity (pKa)>7
Isoelectric point 7.7
Thermochemistry [3]
−1277 kJ·mol−1
Pharmacology [4]
A02AB01 ( WHO )
  • US: B (No risk in non-human studies)
    Hazards
    Safety data sheet External MSDS
    GHS pictograms GHS-pictogram-exclam.svg
    H319, H335
    P264, P261, P280, P271, P312, P304+340, P305+351+338, P337+313
    NFPA 704 (fire diamond)
    Flammability code 0: Will not burn. E.g. waterHealth code 1: Exposure would cause irritation but only minor residual injury. E.g. turpentineReactivity code 0: Normally stable, even under fire exposure conditions, and is not reactive with water. E.g. liquid nitrogenSpecial hazards (white): no codeAluminium hydroxide
    0
    1
    0
    Flash point Non-flammable
    Lethal dose or concentration (LD, LC):
    >5000 mg/kg (rat, oral)
    Related compounds
    Other anions
    None
    Related compounds
    Sodium oxide,
    aluminium oxide hydroxide
    Except where otherwise noted, data are given for materials in their standard state (at 25 °C [77 °F], 100 kPa).
    X mark.svgN  verify  (what is  Yes check.svgYX mark.svgN ?)
    Infobox references

    Aluminium hydroxide, Al(OH)3, is found in nature as the mineral gibbsite (also known as hydrargillite) and its three much rarer polymorphs: bayerite, doyleite, and nordstrandite. Aluminium hydroxide is amphoteric in nature, i.e., it has both basic and acidic properties. Closely related are aluminium oxide hydroxide, AlO(OH), and aluminium oxide or alumina (Al2O3), the latter of which is also amphoteric. These compounds together are the major components of the aluminium ore bauxite.

    Structure

    Al(OH)3 is built up of double layers of hydroxyl groups with aluminium ions occupying two-thirds of the octahedral holes between the two layers. [5] [6] Four polymorphs are recognized. [7] All feature layers of octahedral aluminium hydroxide units, with hydrogen bonds between the layers. The polymorphs differr in terms of the stacking of the layers. All forms of Al(OH)3 crystals are hexagonal:

    Hydrargillite, once thought to be aluminium hydroxide, is an aluminium phosphate. Nonetheless, both gibbsite and hydrargillite refer to the same polymorphism of aluminium hydroxide, with gibbsite used most commonly in the United States and hydrargillite used more often in Europe. Hydrargillite is named after the Greek words for water (hydra) and clay (argylles).

    Properties

    Aluminium hydroxide is amphoteric. In acid, it acts as a Brønsted–Lowry base. It neutralizes the acid, yielding a salt: [8]

    3 HCl + Al(OH)3 → AlCl3 + 3 H2O

    In bases, it acts a Lewis acid by binding hydroxide ions: [8]

    Al(OH)3 + OH → Al(OH)4

    Production

    Red mud reservoirs (this one in Stade, Germany) contain the corrosive residues from the production of aluminum hydroxide. Butzflethermoor Rotschlammdeponie Luftaufnahmen 2012-05-by-RaBoe-478-1.jpg
    Red mud reservoirs (this one in Stade, Germany) contain the corrosive residues from the production of aluminum hydroxide.

    Virtually all the aluminium hydroxide used commercially is manufactured by the Bayer process [9] which involves dissolving bauxite in sodium hydroxide at temperatures up to 270 °C (518 °F). The waste solid, bauxite tailings, is removed and aluminium hydroxide is precipitated from the remaining solution of sodium aluminate. This aluminium hydroxide can be converted to aluminium oxide or alumina by calcination.

    The residue or bauxite tailings, which is mostly iron oxide, is highly caustic due to residual sodium hydroxide. It was historically stored in lagoons; this led to the Ajka alumina plant accident in 2010 in Hungary, where a dam bursting led to the drowning of nine people. An additional 122 sought treatment for chemical burns. The mud contaminated 40 square kilometres (15 sq mi) of land and reached the Danube. While the mud was considered non-toxic due to low levels of heavy metals, the associated slurry had a pH of 13. [10]

    Uses

    Fire retardant filler

    Aluminium hydroxide also finds use as a fire retardant filler for polymer applications. It is selected for these applications because it is colorless (like most polymers), inexpensive, and his good fire retardant properties. [11] Magnesium hydroxide and mixtures of huntite and hydromagnesite are used similarly [12] [13] [14] [15] [16] It decomposes at about 180 °C (356 °F), absorbing a considerable amount of heat in the process and giving off water vapour. In addition to behaving as a fire retardant, it is very effective as a smoke suppressant in a wide range of polymers, most especially in polyesters, acrylics, ethylene vinyl acetate, epoxies, PVC and rubber. [17]

    Precursor to Al compounds

    Aluminium hydroxide is a feedstock for the manufacture of other aluminium compounds: speciality calcined aluminas, aluminium sulfate, polyaluminium chloride, aluminium chloride, zeolites, sodium aluminate, activated alumina, and aluminium nitrate. [6]

    Freshly precipitated aluminium hydroxide forms gels, which are the basis for the application of aluminium salts as flocculants in water purification. This gel crystallizes with time. Aluminium hydroxide gels can be dehydrated (e.g. using water-miscible non-aqueous solvents like ethanol) to form an amorphous aluminium hydroxide powder, which is readily soluble in acids. Heating converts it to activated aluminas, which are used as desiccants, adsorbent in gas purification, and catalyst supports. [11]

    Pharmaceutical

    Under the generic name "algeldrate", aluminium hydroxide is used as an antacid in humans and animals (mainly cats and dogs). It is preferred over other alternatives such as sodium bicarbonate because Al(OH)3, being insoluble, does not increase the pH of stomach above 7 and hence, does not trigger secretion of excess acid by the stomach. Brand names include Alu-Cap, Aludrox, Gaviscon or Pepsamar. It reacts with excess acid in the stomach, reducing the acidity of the stomach content, [18] [19] which may relieve the symptoms of ulcers, heartburn or dyspepsia. Such products can cause constipation, because the aluminium ions inhibit the contractions of smooth muscle cells in the gastrointestinal tract, slowing peristalsis and lengthening the time needed for stool to pass through the colon. [20] Some such products are formulated to minimize such effects through the inclusion of equal concentrations of magnesium hydroxide or magnesium carbonate, which have counterbalancing laxative effects. [21]

    This compound is also used to control hyperphosphatemia (elevated phosphate, or phosphorus, levels in the blood) in people and animals suffering from kidney failure. Normally, the kidneys filter excess phosphate out from the blood, but kidney failure can cause phosphate to accumulate. The aluminium salt, when ingested, binds to phosphate in the intestines and reduce the amount of phosphorus that can be absorbed. [22] [23]

    Precipitated aluminium hydroxide is included as an adjuvant in some vaccines (e.g. anthrax vaccine). One of the well-known brands of aluminium hydroxide adjuvant is Alhydrogel, made by Brenntag Biosector. [24] [ full citation needed ] Since it absorbs protein well, it also functions to stabilize vaccines by preventing the proteins in the vaccine from precipitating or sticking to the walls of the container during storage. Aluminium hydroxide is sometimes called "alum", a term generally reserved for one of several sulfates.[ citation needed ]

    Vaccine formulations containing aluminium hydroxide stimulate the immune system by inducing the release of uric acid, an immunological danger signal. This strongly attracts certain types of monocytes which differentiate into dendritic cells. The dendritic cells pick up the antigen, carry it to lymph nodes, and stimulate T cells and B cells. [25] It appears to contribute to induction of a good Th2 response, so is useful for immunizing against pathogens that are blocked by antibodies. However, it has little capacity to stimulate cellular (Th1) immune responses, important for protection against many pathogens, [26] nor is it useful when the antigen is peptide-based. [27]

    Safety

    Aluminium hydroxide, like most aluminum compounds, is of low toxicity.

    In the 1960s and 1970s it was speculated that aluminium was related to various neurological disorders, including Alzheimer's disease. [28] [29] Since then, multiple epidemiological studies have found no connection between exposure to environmental or swallowed aluminium and neurological disorders, though injected aluminium was not looked at in these studies. [30] [31] [32]

    Related Research Articles

    Aluminium Chemical element with atomic number 13

    Aluminium is a chemical element with the symbol Al and atomic number 13. It is a silvery-white, soft, non-magnetic and ductile metal in the boron group. By mass, aluminium makes up about 8% of the Earth's crust, where it is the third most abundant element and also the most abundant metal. Occurrence of aluminium decreases in the Earth's mantle below, however. The chief ore of aluminium is bauxite. Aluminium metal is highly reactive, such that native specimens are rare and limited to extreme reducing environments. Instead, it is found combined in over 270 different minerals.

    Bauxite Sedimentary rock rich in aluminium

    Bauxite is a sedimentary rock with a relatively high aluminium content. It is the world's main source of aluminium and gallium. Bauxite consists mostly of the aluminium minerals gibbsite (Al(OH)3), boehmite (γ-AlO(OH)) and diaspore (α-AlO(OH)), mixed with the two iron oxides goethite (FeO(OH)) and haematite (Fe2O3), the aluminium clay mineral kaolinite (Al2Si2O5(OH)) and small amounts of anatase (TiO2) and ilmenite (FeTiO3 or FeO.TiO2).

    Hydroxide Family of the hydroxide salts

    Hydroxide is a diatomic anion with chemical formula OH. It consists of an oxygen and hydrogen atom held together by a covalent bond, and carries a negative electric charge. It is an important but usually minor constituent of water. It functions as a base, a ligand, a nucleophile, and a catalyst. The hydroxide ion forms salts, some of which dissociate in aqueous solution, liberating solvated hydroxide ions. Sodium hydroxide is a multi-million-ton per annum commodity chemical. A hydroxide attached to a strongly electropositive center may itself ionize, liberating a hydrogen cation (H+), making the parent compound an acid.

    Oxide Chemical compound with at least one oxygen atom

    An oxide is a chemical compound that contains at least one oxygen atom and one other element in its chemical formula. "Oxide" itself is the dianion of oxygen, an O2– atom. Metal oxides thus typically contain an anion of oxygen in the oxidation state of −2. Most of the Earth's crust consists of solid oxides, the result of elements being oxidized by the oxygen in air or in water. Even materials considered pure elements often develop an oxide coating. For example, aluminium foil develops a thin skin of Al2O3 (called a passivation layer) that protects the foil from further corrosion. Certain elements can form multiple oxides, differing in the amounts of the element combining with the oxygen. Examples are carbon, iron, nitrogen (see nitrogen oxide), silicon, titanium, and aluminium. In such cases the oxides are distinguished by specifying the numbers of atoms involved, as in carbon monoxide and carbon dioxide, or by specifying the element's oxidation number, as in iron(II) oxide and iron(III) oxide.

    Sodium hydroxide Chemical compound with formula NaOH

    Sodium hydroxide, also known as lye and caustic soda, is an inorganic compound with the formula NaOH. It is a white solid ionic compound consisting of sodium cations Na+
    and hydroxide anions OH
    .

    Aluminium oxide Chemical compound with formula Al2O3

    Aluminium oxide (IUPAC name) or aluminum oxide (American English) is a chemical compound of aluminium and oxygen with the chemical formula Al2O3. It is the most commonly occurring of several aluminium oxides, and specifically identified as aluminium(III) oxide. It is commonly called alumina and may also be called aloxide, aloxite, or alundum depending on particular forms or applications. It occurs naturally in its crystalline polymorphic phase α-Al2O3 as the mineral corundum, varieties of which form the precious gemstones ruby and sapphire. Al2O3 is significant in its use to produce aluminium metal, as an abrasive owing to its hardness, and as a refractory material owing to its high melting point.

    Magnesium hydroxide chemical compound

    Magnesium hydroxide is the inorganic compound with the chemical formula Mg(OH)2. It occurs in nature as the mineral brucite. It is a white solid with low solubility in water (Ksp = 5.61×10−12). Magnesium hydroxide is a common component of antacids, such as milk of magnesia, as well as laxatives.

    Brucite hydroxide mineral

    Brucite is the mineral form of magnesium hydroxide, with the chemical formula Mg(OH)2. It is a common alteration product of periclase in marble; a low-temperature hydrothermal vein mineral in metamorphosed limestones and chlorite schists; and formed during serpentinization of dunites. Brucite is often found in association with serpentine, calcite, aragonite, dolomite, magnesite, hydromagnesite, artinite, talc and chrysotile.

    The Bayer process is the principal industrial means of refining bauxite to produce alumina (aluminium oxide) and was developed by Carl Josef Bayer. Bauxite, the most important ore of aluminium, contains only 30–60% aluminium oxide (Al2O3), the rest being a mixture of silica, various iron oxides, and titanium dioxide. The aluminium oxide must be purified before it can be refined to aluminium metal.

    Aluminium chlorohydrate is a group of specific aluminum salts having the general formula AlnCl(3n-m)(OH)m. It is used in cosmetics as an antiperspirant and as a coagulant in water purification.

    Boehmite hydroxide mineral

    Boehmite or böhmite is an aluminium oxide hydroxide mineral, a component of the aluminium ore bauxite. It is dimorphous with diaspore. It crystallizes in the orthorhombic dipyramidal system and is typically massive in habit. It is white with tints of yellow, green, brown or red due to impurities. It has a vitreous to pearly luster, a Mohs hardness of 3 to 3.5 and a specific gravity of 3.00 to 3.07. It is colorless in thin section, optically biaxial positive with refractive indices of nα = 1.644 - 1.648, nβ = 1.654 - 1.657 and nγ = 1.661 - 1.668.

    Aluminium sulfate Chemical compound

    Aluminium sulfate is a chemical compound with the formula Al2(SO4)3. It is soluble in water and is mainly used as a coagulating agent (promoting particle collision by neutralizing charge) in the purification of drinking water and waste water treatment plants, and also in paper manufacturing.

    Sodium aluminate chemical compound

    Sodium aluminate is an inorganic chemical that is used as an effective source of aluminium hydroxide for many industrial and technical applications. Pure sodium aluminate (anhydrous) is a white crystalline solid having a formula variously given as NaAlO2, NaAl(OH)4 (hydrated), Na2O·Al2O3, or Na2Al2O4. Commercial sodium aluminate is available as a solution or a solid.
    Other related compounds, sometimes called sodium aluminate, prepared by reaction of Na2O and Al2O3 are Na5AlO4 which contains discrete AlO45− anions, Na7Al3O8 and Na17Al5O16 which contain complex polymeric anions, and NaAl11O17, once mistakenly believed to be β-alumina, a phase of aluminium oxide.

    Hydromagnesite carbonate mineral

    Hydromagnesite is a hydrated magnesium carbonate mineral with the formula Mg5(CO3)4(OH)2·4H2O.

    In chemistry, an aluminate is a compound containing an oxyanion of aluminium, such as sodium aluminate. In the naming of inorganic compounds, it is a suffix that indicates a polyatomic anion with a central aluminum atom.

    A fire retardant is a substance that is used to slow down or stop the spread of fire or reduce its intensity. This is commonly accomplished by chemical reactions that reduce the flammability of fuels or delay their combustion. Fire retardants may also cool the fuel through physical action or endothermic chemical reactions. Fire retardants are available as powder, to be mixed with water, as fire-fighting foams and fire-retardant gels. Fire retardants are also available as coatings or sprays to be applied to an object.

    Zinc hydroxide Zn(OH)2 is an inorganic chemical compound. It also occurs naturally as 3 rare minerals: wülfingite (orthorhombic), ashoverite and sweetite (both tetragonal).

    Aluminium hydroxide oxide or aluminium oxyhydroxide, AlO(OH) is found as one of two well defined crystalline phases, which are also known as the minerals boehmite and diaspore. The minerals are important constituents of the aluminium ore, bauxite.

    Huntite Carbonate mineral

    Huntite is a carbonate mineral with the chemical formula Mg3Ca(CO3)4. Huntite crystallizes in the trigonal system and typically occurs as platy crystals and powdery masses. The most common industrial use of huntite is as a natural mixture with hydromagnesite as a flame retardant or fire retardant additive for polymers.

    Bauxite tailings Waste product from the production of alumina

    Bauxite tailings, also known as bauxite residue, red mud, red sludge, or alumina refinery residues (ARR), is a highly alkaline waste product composed mainly of iron oxide that is generated in the industrial production of alumina. It is important to differentiate between the alkaline waste generated in the Bayer process and the tailings generated during the mining of bauxite. This article specifically covers the alkaline waste generated when operating the Bayer process. The scale of production makes the waste product an important one, and issues with its storage are reviewed and every opportunity is explored to find uses for it.

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