NaOH which is called sodium hydroxide is a very important compound that has many applications. It makes with three elements sodium, oxygen, and hydrogen. Sodium hydroxide, also known as lye and caustic soda, is a highly corrosive strong alkali that is used in Industry.
It is available in solid form or aqueous solution. NaOH dissolves in water to produce sodium (Na+) and hydroxide ions (OH-). These ions are very reactive and can cause extensive damage to proteins, tissues, and cells.
It’s an extremely strong base and it’s used in many industrial processes. It is an inorganic compound. The pH of NaOH is approximately 13. Its molar mass is 39.997 g/mol
Physical Properties of NaOH:
There are many physical properties of “NaOH” in which some of the properties are given below:
- Pure sodium hydroxide is a white crystalline solid which has a strong alkaline taste and can be corrosive vegetable tissues and metals
- It is colorless in nature.
- It has a high melting point of 318°C and boils at 1388°C.
- It has a density of 2.13 g/cm³
- It is normally soluble in alcohol but highly soluble in water
- Sodium hydroxide reacts vigorously with acids, forming salts and liberating heat.
- It dissolves in water to form strong alkaline solutions and it also dissolves in many organic compounds.
- It absorbs carbon dioxide from the air, so its solutions are not strongly alkaline until after prolonged standing or contact with an absorbent material such as limestone or kaolin.
Chemical properties of NaOH
There are many chemical properties of “NaOH” in which some of the properties are given below:
- It is highly reactive and can cause chemical burns if it comes into contact with the skin
- The chemical reaction of NaOH is the dissolution of sodium hydroxide in water. This creates a strong alkaline solution that can be corrosive to organic matter
- When NaOH comes into contact with an acid, a chemical reaction takes place that produces salt and water.
- When it reacts with the metal it produces salt and hydrogen gas.
- Sodium hydroxide dissolves in water to produce sodium (Na+) and hydroxide ions (OH-). These ions combine with other substances to form salts.
Uses of NaOH
is a very important compound in the world. It is used in many fields. NaOH Some uses of NaOH are given below:
- One of the most important use of sodium hydroxide (NaOH) is in the pulp and paper industry, where it is used to make sodium chlorate, which helps to break down the fibers in wood.
- It is used in the production processes for numerous products, such as paper, textiles, rayon fabrics, and detergents.
- It is used as a cleaning agent for metals.
- It is used for the formulations of soap.
- It is also used in the manufacture of leather tanning and oil refining.
- NaOH is used as a pH regulator in foods and cosmetics, as well as in textile manufacturing.
- NaOH is also used as a saponifier in soaps and detergents due to its ability to break down oils and dirt into soluble molecules.
Formation of Sodium Hydroxide
The formation of sodium hydroxide is accomplished by means of the electrolysis of aqueous sodium. Sodium hydroxide is produced at the cathode of an electrolytic cell where water is reduced to hydrogen and hydroxide ions:
2Na+ + 2H2O + 2e− → H2 + 2NaOH
Sodium hydroxide can also be formed from sodium carbonate and calcium oxide. Sodium carbonate is made by heating sodium chloride with limestone (calcium carbonate). The molten salt decomposes the limestone to form lime (CaO) and solid CO2 gas. If this process takes place in the presence of water vapor, then H2O will also form and it will react with the CaO to produce more Ca(OH)2:
NaCl + CaCO3 → NaCO3 + CaCl2
Reaction of NaOH with Acids
When NaOH comes into contact with an acid, a chemical reaction takes place that produces salt and water. This is known as the neutralization reaction.
Few examples are given below:
NaOH with HCl
2NaOH + HCl → 2NaCl + H2O
when we react an HCl acid with NaOH a base it gives us salt and water.
NaOH with H2SO4
2NaOH + H2SO4 → Na2SO4 + 2HO
You can also check “Is H2SO4 a Strong Acid“
The reaction between sodium hydroxide and sulfuric acid produces water, sodium sulfate, and hydrogen gas. Sodium sulfate is a white solid that is soluble in water
Reaction of NaOH with Metals
When NaOH reacts with metals it produces salt and hydrogen gas. The reactivity of sodium hydroxide with metals increases as you go down the group in the periodic table. Two examples of metals are given below:
NaOH with Mg
When NaOH is added to magnesium metal, a vigorous reaction takes place. The bright metallic magnesium will corrode and react with the OH- ions in the sodium hydroxide solution to produce hydrogen gas:
Mg (s) + 2NaOH (aq) → Mg(OH)2 (s)+ H2(g)
NaOH with Al
2Al + 2NaOH + 2H2O → 2NaAlO2 + 3H
When sodium hydroxide reacts with the aluminum it produced sodium aluminate and hydrogen gas
What happens when you put NaOH in Water
When sodium hydroxide is added to water, it dissolves and produces aqueous sodium ions (Na+) and hydroxide ions (OH-). The concentration of Na+ increases while the OH- decreases until they reach equilibrium. At this point, there is no net change in pH because H2O buffers any changes that may occur.
What type of base is NaOH?
Sodium hydroxide is a highly alkaline base that is used in many industrial and commercial applications. It has a strong corrosive effect on organic materials, making it ideal for use in chemical manufacturing and cleaning operations. Sodium hydroxide can also be utilized to adjust the pH of water systems to achieve more desirable levels. That’s why it considered to be a strong base
Why sodium hydroxide is dangerous?
The reason that sodium hydroxide is a dangerous chemical is that it can cause severe burns to the skin and eyes. It is also corrosive, meaning it can damage metals and other materials. Sodium hydroxide is used in many industrial processes, including soapmaking and the production of paper pulp. It is also found in drain cleaners and oven cleaners. It is important to be careful when handling it.
NaOH is a strong base that is used in the production processes for numerous products, such as paper, textiles, rayon fabrics, soap, cleaning metals, and detergents. It is corrosive and is very dangerous. It is important to be careful when handling it. Make sure you wear a mask when working with it. It is also important to keep your skin away from the solution because it will burn your skin if you touch it. If you spill it on yourself, it will cause serious problems. If you are working with it and you see a white mist coming out of the bottle, it is a good idea to immediately throw the bottle in the trash. You could get hurt if you are around it. It is also important to clean the area where the liquid is spilled as soon as possible.