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Characteristics of Concentrated Sulfuric Acid

Feb. 23, 2021


The physical properties of concentrated sulfuric acid


Pure Sulfuric Acid is a colorless, viscous, oily liquid that emits a lot of heat when dissolved in water. When diluting concentrated sulfuric acid, the concentrated sulfuric acid should be slowly poured into the water along the wall of the beaker, and continuously stirred with a glass rod.


Sulfuric Acid

Sulfuric Acid



The characteristics of concentrated sulfuric acid


1. Water absorption


(1) Concentrated sulfuric acid can absorb water vapor in air or other gases, wet water mixed in solids, and crystal water in crystal hydrates.


(2) Gas scrubbers containing concentrated sulfuric acid are commonly used to dry certain gases, but alkaline gases and strong reducing gases cannot be dried.


2. Dehydration


Concentrated Sulfuric Acid can "detach" the hydrogen and oxygen elements in organic compounds from the organic matter according to the composition of water, and combine to form water molecules.


3. Strong oxidizing


(1) Concentrated sulfuric acid can react with most metals to produce high-valent metal sulfates, which are generally reduced to SO2.


(2) At room temperature, concentrated sulfuric acid can passivate iron and aluminum.


(3) Concentrated sulfuric acid can oxidize non-metallic elements such as carbon and phosphorus into high-valence oxides or oxyacids, which are themselves reduced to SO2.


Error-prone reminder


Not all gases can be dried with concentrated sulfuric acid. Concentrated sulfuric acid is acidic and can chemically react with alkaline gases such as ammonia. Therefore, concentrated sulfuric acid cannot be used to dry ammonia. Concentrated sulfuric acid has strong oxidizing properties and can undergo redox reactions with reducing gases such as H2S. Therefore, concentrated sulfuric acid cannot be used to dry reducing gases such as H2S.


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