What is Phosphoric acid and how is it manufactured?
Phosphoric acid, also known as orthophosphoric acid or phosphoric(V) acid, is a weak acid with the chemical formula H3PO4. It is normally encountered as a colorless syrup of 85% concentration in water. The pure compound is a colorless solid. The name "orthophosphoric acid" can be used to distinguish this specific acid from other "phosphoric acids", such as pyrophosphoric acid.
Phosphoric acid is produced industrially by two general routes. In the wet process a phosphate-containing mineral such as calcium hydroxyapatite is treated with sulfuric acid.
To produce food-grade phosphoric acid, phosphate ore is first reduced with coke in an electric arc furnace, to make elemental phosphorus. Silica is also added, resulting in the production of calcium silicate slag. Elemental phosphorus is distilled out of the furnace and burned with air to produce high-purity phosphorus pentoxide, which is dissolved in water to make phosphoric acid.
What are the main usages of phosphoric acid?
The dominant use of phosphoric acid is for fertilizers.
Also, it could be used in many applications, such as soaps and detergents, food industry, water treatment, toothpastes and others.
Main phosphate derivatives
Soaps and detergents
DCP (CaHPO4), IMP, SMFP
STPP (Na3P3O9), TCP, APP, DAP, zinc phosphate (Zn3(PO4)2), aluminium phosphate (AlPO4, H3PO4)
Food-grade phosphoric acid is used to acidify foods and beverages such as various colas and jams, providing a tangy or sour taste. Soft drinks containing phosphoric acid, which would include Coca-Cola, are sometimes called phosphate sodas or phosphates.
Please check our summary page for Phosphoric Acid and Phosphates for below different phosphate derivatives:
1. Phosphoric Acid
2. Ammonium Phosphates
3. Potassium Phosphates
4. Sodium Phosphates
5. Calcium Phosphates
6. Urea Phosphate
OKCHEM Distribution Project for Phosphates