Calcium stearate

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Calcium stearate
Stearic Acid Calcium Salt Structural Formula V.2.svg
IUPAC name
Calcium octadecanoate
Other names
3D model (JSmol)
ECHA InfoCard 100.014.976
PubChem CID
Molar mass 607.030 g·mol−1
Appearancewhite to yellowish-white powder
Density 1.08 g/cm3
Melting point 155 °C (311 °F; 428 K)
0.004 g/100 mL (15 °C)
Solubility soluble in hot pyridine
slightly soluble in oil
insoluble in alcohol, ether
NFPA 704 (fire diamond)
Flammability code 1: Must be pre-heated before ignition can occur. Flash point over 93 °C (200 °F). E.g. canola oilHealth code 2: Intense or continued but not chronic exposure could cause temporary incapacitation or possible residual injury. E.g. chloroformReactivity code 0: Normally stable, even under fire exposure conditions, and is not reactive with water. E.g. liquid nitrogenSpecial hazards (white): no codeCalcium stearate
Except where otherwise noted, data are given for materials in their standard state (at 25 °C [77 °F], 100 kPa).
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Infobox references

Calcium stearate is a carboxylate of calcium, classified as a calcium soap. It is a component of some lubricants, surfactants, as well as many foodstuffs. It is a white waxy powder. [1]


Production and occurrence

Calcium stearate is produced by heating stearic acid and calcium oxide:

2 C18H35COOH + CaO → (C18H35COO)2Ca + H2O

It is also the main component of soap scum, a white solid that forms when soap is mixed with hard water. Unlike soaps containing sodium and potassium, calcium stearate is insoluble in water and does not lather well. [2] Commercially it is sold as a 50% dispersion in water or as a spray dried powder. As a food additive it is known by the generic E number E470.


Calcium stearate is a waxy material with low solubility in water, unlike traditional sodium and potassium soaps. It is also easy and cheap to produce, and exhibits low toxicity. These attributes are the basis of many of its applications. Related applications exist for the magnesium stearate. [1]

Related Research Articles

Chemistry of ascorbic acid group of chemical compounds

Ascorbic acid is an organic compound with formula C
, originally called hexuronic acid. It is a white solid, but impure samples can appear yellowish. It dissolves well in water to give mildly acidic solutions. It is a mild reducing agent.

Sodium chloride Chemical compound

Sodium chloride, commonly known as salt, is an ionic compound with the chemical formula NaCl, representing a 1:1 ratio of sodium and chloride ions. With molar masses of 22.99 and 35.45 g/mol respectively, 100 g of NaCl contains 39.34 g Na and 60.66 g Cl. Sodium chloride is the salt most responsible for the salinity of seawater and of the extracellular fluid of many multicellular organisms. In its edible form of table salt, it is commonly used as a condiment and food preservative. Large quantities of sodium chloride are used in many industrial processes, and it is a major source of sodium and chlorine compounds used as feedstocks for further chemical syntheses. A second major application of sodium chloride is de-icing of roadways in sub-freezing weather.

Potassium hydroxide chemical compound

Potassium hydroxide is an inorganic compound with the formula KOH, and is commonly called caustic potash.

Potassium bicarbonate chemical compound

Potassium bicarbonate (also known as potassium hydrogen carbonate or potassium acid carbonate) is the inorganic compound with the chemical formula KHCO3. It is a white solid.

Potassium carbonate chemical compound

Potassium carbonate is the inorganic compound with the formula K2CO3. It is a white salt, which is soluble in water. It is deliquescent, often appearing as a damp or wet solid. Potassium carbonate is mainly used in the production of soap and glass.

Stearin chemical compound

Stearin, or tristearin, or glyceryl tristearate is a triglyceride derived from three units of stearic acid. Most triglycerides are derived from at least two and more commonly three different fatty acids. Like other triglycerides, stearin can crystallise in three polymorphs. For stearin, these melt at 54 (α-form), 65, and 72.5 °C (β-form).

Stearic acid chemical compound

Stearic acid ( STEER-ik, stee-ARR-ik) is a saturated fatty acid with an 18-carbon chain and has the IUPAC name octadecanoic acid. It is a waxy solid and its chemical formula is C17H35CO2H. Its name comes from the Greek word στέαρ "stéar", which means tallow. The salts and esters of stearic acid are called stearates. As its ester, stearic acid is one of the most common saturated fatty acids found in nature following palmitic acid. The triglyceride derived from three molecules of stearic acid is called stearin.

Efflorescence migration of a salt to the surface of a porous material

In chemistry, efflorescence is the migration of a salt to the surface of a porous material, where it forms a coating. The essential process involves the dissolving of an internally held salt in water, or occasionally in another solvent. The water, with the salt now held in solution, migrates to the surface, then evaporates, leaving a coating of the salt.

An anticaking agent is an additive placed in powdered or granulated materials, such as table salt or confectioneries, to prevent the formation of lumps (caking) and for easing packaging, transport, flowability, and consumption. Caking mechanisms depend on the nature of the material. Crystalline solids often cake by formation of liquid bridge and subsequent fusion of microcrystals. Amorphous materials can cake by glass transitions and changes in viscosity. Polymorphic phase transitions can also induce caking.

Alginic acid Chemical compound

Alginic acid, also called algin, is a polysaccharide distributed widely in the cell walls of brown algae that is hydrophilic and forms a viscous gum when hydrated. With metals such as sodium and calcium, its salts are known as alginates. It is a significant component of the biofilms produced by the bacterium Pseudomonas aeruginosa, a major pathogen found in the lungs of some people who have cystic fibrosis. The biofilm and P. aeruginosa have a high resistance to antibiotics, and are susceptible to inhibition by macrophages. Its colour ranges from white to yellowish-brown. It is sold in filamentous, granular, or powdered forms.

Grease is a semisolid lubricant. Grease generally consists of a soap emulsified with mineral or vegetable oil. The characteristic feature of greases is that they possess a high initial viscosity, which upon the application of shear, drops to give the effect of an oil-lubricated bearing of approximately the same viscosity as the base oil used in the grease. This change in viscosity is called shear thinning. Grease is sometimes used to describe lubricating materials that are simply soft solids or high viscosity liquids, but these materials do not exhibit the shear-thinning properties characteristic of the classical grease. For example, petroleum jellies such as Vaseline are not generally classified as greases.

Magnesium stearate chemical compound

Magnesium stearate is the chemical compound with the formula Mg(C
. It is a soap, consisting of salt containing two equivalents of stearate (the anion of stearic acid) and one magnesium cation (Mg2+). Magnesium stearate is a white, water-insoluble powder. Its applications exploit its softness, insolubility in many solvents, and low toxicity. It is used as a release agent and as a component or lubricant in the production of pharmaceuticals and cosmetics.

Sodium stearate chemical compound

Sodium stearate is the sodium salt of stearic acid. This white solid is the most common soap. It is found in many types of solid deodorants, rubbers, latex paints, and inks. It is also a component of some food additives and food flavorings.

Zinc stearate chemical compound

Zinc stearate is a "zinc soap" that is widely used industrially. In this context, soap is used in its formal sense, a metal "salt" of a fatty acid. It is a white solid that repels water. It is insoluble in polar solvents such as alcohol and ether but soluble in aromatic hydrocarbons and chlorinated hydrocarbons when heated. It is the most powerful mold release agent among all metal soaps. It contains no electrolyte and has a hydrophobic effect. Its main application areas are the plastics and rubber industry, where it is used as a releasing agent and lubricant which can be easily incorporated.

Lithium soap is a soap consisting of a lithium salt of a fatty acid. Sodium-based and potassium-based soaps are used as cleaning agents in domestic and industrial applications, whereas lithium soaps are used as components of lithium grease.

Disodium pyrophosphate chemical compound

Disodium pyrophosphate or sodium acid pyrophosphate (SAPP) is an inorganic compound consisting of sodium cations and pyrophosphate anion. It is a white, water-soluble solid that serves as a buffering and chelating agent, with many applications in the food industry. When crystallized from water, it forms a hexahydrate, but it dehydrates above room temperature. Pyrophosphate is a polyvalent anion with a high affinity for polyvalent cations, e.g. Ca2+.

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.

Sodium ferrocyanide chemical compound

Sodium ferrocyanide is the sodium salt of the coordination compound of formula [Fe(CN)6]4−. In its hydrous form, Na4Fe(CN)6 • 10H2O (sodium ferrocyanide decahydrate), it is sometimes known as yellow prussiate of soda. It is a yellow crystalline solid that is soluble in water and insoluble in alcohol. The yellow color is the color of ferrocyanide anion. Despite the presence of the cyanide ligands, sodium ferrocyanide has low toxicity (acceptable daily intake 0–0.025 mg/kg body weight). The ferrocyanides are less toxic than many salts of cyanide, because they tend not to release free cyanide. However, like all ferrocyanide salt solutions, addition of an acid can result in the production of hydrogen cyanide gas, which is toxic.

Calcium stearoyl-2-lactylate or E482 is a versatile, FDA approved food additive. It is one type of a commercially available lactylate. CSL is non-toxic, biodegradable, and typically manufactured using biorenewable feedstocks. Because CSL is a safe and highly effective food additive, it is used in a wide variety of products from baked goods and desserts to packaging.


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  3. Preventing Efflorescence, Portland Cement Association
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