Calcium phosphate

Last updated

Calcium phosphate is a family of materials and minerals containing calcium ions (Ca2+) together with inorganic phosphate anions. Some so-called calcium phosphates contain oxide and hydroxide as well. They are white solids of nutritious value. [1] Calcium phosphates are found in many living organisms, e.g., bone mineral and tooth enamel. In milk, it exists in a colloidal form in micelles bound to casein protein with magnesium, zinc, and citrate - collectively referred to as colloidal calcium phosphate (CCP). [2] Various calcium phosphate minerals are used in the production of phosphoric acid and fertilizers. Overuse of certain forms of calcium phosphate can lead to nutrient-containing surface runoff and subsequent adverse effects upon receiving waters such as algal blooms and eutrophication.


Orthophosphates, di- and monohydrogen phosphates

These materials contain Ca2+ combined with PO43−,H2PO4 , and/or HPO42−:

Di- and polyphosphates

These materials contain Ca2+ combined with the polyphosphates, such as P2O74− and triphosphate [P3O10]5−:

Hydroxy- and oxo-phosphates

These materials contain other anions in addition to phosphate:

Related Research Articles

Phosphorus Chemical element with atomic number 15

Phosphorus is a chemical element with the symbol P and atomic number 15. Elemental phosphorus exists in two major forms, white phosphorus and red phosphorus, but because it is highly reactive, phosphorus is never found as a free element on Earth. It has a concentration in the Earth's crust of about one gram per kilogram. In minerals, phosphorus generally occurs as phosphate.

Phosphate salt or ester of phosphoric acid

In chemistry, a phosphate is an anion, salt, functional group or ester derived from a phosphoric acid. It most commonly means orthophosphate, a derivative of orthophosphoric acid H

Salt (chemistry) Ionic compound consisting of cations and anions

In chemistry, a salt is a solid chemical compound consisting of an ionic assembly of cations and anions. Salts are composed of related numbers of cations and anions so that the product is electrically neutral. These component ions can be inorganic, such as chloride (Cl), or organic, such as acetate ; and can be monatomic, such as fluoride (F) or polyatomic, such as sulfate.

Pyrophosphate salt or ester of diphosphoric acid

In chemistry, pyrophosphates are phosphorus oxyanions that contain two phosphorus atoms in a P-O-P linkage. A number of pyrophosphate salts exist, such as Na2H2P2O7. Often pyrophosphates are called diphosphates. The parent pyrophosphates are derived from partial or complete neutralization of pyrophosphoric acid. Important salts include disodium pyrophosphate and tetrasodium pyrophosphate. The pyrophosphate bond is also sometimes referred to as a phosphoanhydride bond, a naming convention which emphasizes the loss of water that occurs when two phosphates form a new P-O-P bond, and which mirrors the nomenclature for anhydrides of carboylic acids. Pyrophosphates are found in ATP and other nucleotide triphosphates, which are very important in biochemistry.

Phosphoric acid chemical compound

Phosphoric acid, also known as orthophosphoric acid or phosphoric(V) acid, is a weak acid with the chemical formula H
. It is normally encountered as a colorless, syrup of 85% concentration in water. The pure compound is a colorless solid.

An oxyanion, or oxoanion, is an ion with the generic formula A
. Oxyanions are formed by a large majority of the chemical elements. The formulae of simple oxyanions are determined by the octet rule. The corresponding oxyacid of an oxyanion is the compound H
. The structures of condensed oxyanions can be rationalized in terms of AOn polyhedral units with sharing of corners or edges between polyhedra. The phosphate and polyphosphate esters adenosine monophosphate (AMP), adenosine diphosphate (ADP) and adenosine triphosphate (ATP) are important in biology.

Bone ash is a white material produced by the calcination of bones. Typical bone ash consists of about 55.82% calcium oxide, 42.39% phosphorus pentoxide, and 1.79% water. The exact composition of these compounds varies depending upon the type of bones being used, but generally the formula for bone ash is: Ca5(OH)(PO4)3. Bone ash usually has a density around 3.10 g/mL and a melting point of 1670 °C (3038 °F). Most bones retain their cellular structure through calcination.

Sodium phosphate is a generic term for a variety of salts of sodium (Na+) and phosphate (PO43−). Phosphate also forms families or condensed anions including di-, tri-, tetra-, and polyphosphates. Most of these salts are known in both anhydrous (water-free) and hydrated forms. The hydrates are more common than the anhydrous forms.

Hydroxyapatite Naturally occurring mineral form of calcium apatite

Hydroxyapatite, also called hydroxylapatite (HA), is a naturally occurring mineral form of calcium apatite with the formula Ca5(PO4)3(OH), but it is usually written Ca10(PO4)6(OH)2 to denote that the crystal unit cell comprises two entities. Hydroxyapatite is the hydroxyl endmember of the complex apatite group. The OH ion can be replaced by fluoride, chloride or carbonate, producing fluorapatite or chlorapatite. It crystallizes in the hexagonal crystal system. Pure hydroxyapatite powder is white. Naturally occurring apatites can, however, also have brown, yellow, or green colorations, comparable to the discolorations of dental fluorosis.

Phosphoric acids and phosphates

A phosphoric acid, in the general sense, is a phosphorus oxoacid in which each phosphorus atom is in the oxidation state +5, and is bonded to four oxygen atoms, one of them through a double bond, arranged as the corners of a tetrahedron. Two or more of these PO
tetrahedra may be connected by shared single-bonded oxygens, forming linear or branched chains, cycles, or more complex structures. The single-bonded oxygen atoms that are not shared are completed with acidic hydrogen atoms. The general formula of a phosphoric acid is Hn+2−2xPnO3n+1−x, where n is the number of phosphorus atoms and x is the number of fundamental cycles in the molecule's structure, between 0 and (n+2)/2.

Phosphorus oxoacid is a generic name for any acid whose molecule consists of atoms of phosphorus, oxygen, and hydrogen. There is a potentially infinite number of such compounds. Some of them are unstable and have not been isolated, but the derived anions and organic groups are present in stable salts and esters. The most important ones — in biology, geology, industry, and chemical research — are the phosphoric acids, whose esters and salts are the phosphates.

Tricalcium phosphate chemical compound Ca₃O₈P₂

Tricalcium phosphate (sometimes abbreviated TCP) is a calcium salt of phosphoric acid with the chemical formula Ca3(PO4)2. It is also known as tribasic calcium phosphate and bone phosphate of lime (BPL). It is a white solid of low solubility. Most commercial samples of "tricalcium phosphate" are in fact hydroxyapatite.

Calcium pyrophosphate chemical compound

Calcium pyrophosphate (Ca2P2O7) is a chemical compound, an insoluble calcium salt containing the pyrophosphate anion. There are a number of forms reported: an anhydrous form, a dihydrate, Ca2P2O7·2H2O and a tetrahydrate, Ca2P2O7·4H2O. Deposition of dihydrate crystals in cartilage are responsible for the severe joint pain in cases of calcium pyrophosphate deposition disease (pseudo gout) whose symptoms are similar to those of gout. Ca2P2O7 is commonly used as a mild abrasive agent in toothpastes, because of its insolubility and nonreactivity toward fluoride.

Monocalcium phosphate chemical compound CaH₄O₈P₂

Monocalcium phosphate is an inorganic compound with the chemical formula Ca(H2PO4)2 ("AMCP" or "CMP-A" for anhydrous monocalcium phosphate). It is commonly found as the monohydrate ("MCP" or "MCP-M"), Ca(H2PO4)2·H2O. Both salts are colourless solids. They are used mainly as superphosphate fertilizers and are also popular leavening agents..

Sodium monofluorophosphate chemical compound

Sodium monofluorophosphate, commonly abbreviated MFP, is an inorganic compound with the chemical formula Na2PO3F. Typical for a salt, MFP is odourless, colourless, and water-soluble. This salt is an ingredient in some toothpastes.

Dicalcium phosphate chemical compound CaHPO₄

Dicalcium phosphate is the calcium phosphate with the formula CaHPO4 and its dihydrate. The "di" prefix in the common name arises because the formation of the HPO42– anion involves the removal of two protons from phosphoric acid, H3PO4. It is also known as dibasic calcium phosphate or calcium monohydrogen phosphate. Dicalcium phosphate is used as a food additive, it is found in some toothpastes as a polishing agent and is a biomaterial.

Fluorapatite phosphate mineral

Fluorapatite, often with the alternate spelling of fluoroapatite, is a phosphate mineral with the formula Ca5(PO4)3F (calcium fluorophosphate). Fluorapatite is a hard crystalline solid. Although samples can have various color (green, brown, blue, yellow, violet, or colorless), the pure mineral is colorless as expected for a material lacking transition metals. Along with hydroxylapatite, it can be a component of tooth enamel.

Disodium phosphate chemical compound Na2HPO4

Disodium phosphate (DSP), or sodium hydrogen phosphate, or sodium phosphate dibasic, is the inorganic compound with the formula Na2HPO4. It is one of several sodium phosphates. The salt is known in anhydrous form as well as forms with 2, 7, 8, and 12 hydrates. All are water-soluble white powders; the anhydrous salt being hygroscopic.

Tetracalcium phosphate is the compound Ca4(PO4)2O, (4CaO.P2O5). It is the most basic of the calcium phosphates, and has a Ca/P ratio of 2, making it the most phosphorus poor phosphate. It is found as the mineral hilgenstockite, which is formed in industrial phosphate rich slag (called "Thomas slag"). This slag was used as a fertiliser due to the higher solubility of tetracalcium phosphate relative to apatite minerals. Tetracalcium phosphate is a component in some calcium phosphate cements that have medical applications.

Vanadium phosphates are inorganic compounds with the formula VOxPO4 as well related hydrates with the formula VOxPO4(H2O)n. Some of these compounds are used commercially as catalysts for oxidation reactions.


  1. Klaus Schrödter; Gerhard Bettermann; Thomas Staffel; Friedrich Wahl; Thomas Klein; Thomas Hofmann (2008). Phosphoric Acid and Phosphates. Ullmann’s Encyclopedia of Industrial Chemistry. Weinheim: Wiley-VCH. doi:10.1002/14356007.a19_465.pub3.
  2. A. Y. Tamime, ed. (2006). Brined cheeses - The Society of Dairy Technology (SDT). Wiley-Blackwell. ISBN   978-1-4051-2460-7.