Copper sulfate is the crystalline hydrate of copper sulfate, that is, the structure of this substance also includes water molecules. It has the basic properties that are characteristic of ordinary cuprum sulfate. It should be said that this is a salt, therefore, it is characterized by chemical behavior, which distinguishes many other substances of this group.
Blue vitriol is a blue crystalline solid. It is soluble in water. Five molecules of water fall on one molecule of cuprum sulfate in the structure of a substance. Anhydrous, he does not have any color. In nature, it can be found in the form of certain minerals, such as chalcanthite. This stone is little known and rarely used.
Chemical properties of copper sulfate (vitriol)
Like any other sulfate, copper can decompose under the influence of high temperatures. With this kind of reaction, cuprum oxide, sulfur dioxide and oxygen are formed. Also, copper sulfate, like other salts, can be a participant in the substitution reaction. With this kind of interaction, the more active metal, which is to the left of the cuprum in the electrochemical series of activity, displaces the copper atom from the compound and takes its place. For example, adding sodium to the substance in question, you can get sodium sulfate and copper, which will precipitate. In addition, this substance is able to react with basic and acidic hydroxides, as well as other salts. For example, the reaction of cuprum sulfate with calcium hydroxide - the base. As a result of this interaction, copper hydroxide and calcium sulfate are released. As an example of the reaction of this salt with an acid, we can take its interaction with phosphoric acid, which results in the formation of copper phosphate and sulfate acid. When copper sulfate is mixed with a solution of another salt, an exchange reaction occurs. That is, if, for example, barium chloride is added to it, then copper chloride and barium sulfate precipitating can be obtained (if one of the products is not a precipitate, gas or water, the reaction cannot be carried out).
Obtaining this substance
Copper sulfate can be obtained using two main methods. The first is the interaction of copper hydroxide with concentrated sulfate acid. A significant amount of water is also released, part of which goes to hydration. The second method of obtaining this substance is the interaction of concentrated sulfuric acid directly with copper. This kind of reaction can only be carried out under specific conditions in the form of an elevated temperature. It is also possible to carry out a reaction between copper oxide and sulfate acid, as a result of which the desired substance and water are also formed. In addition, copper sulfate is obtained by burning copper sulfites.
Application of copper sulfate
This substance has found its main application in the horticultural field - it is used to protect plants from diseases and pests due to its antiseptic and disinfectant. Also, this substance is widely used in agriculture, as it can be used to increase frost resistance and immunity of plants to fungi. In addition, copper sulfate is used in metallurgy, as well as in construction. They are impregnated with wood to give it refractory properties. In the food industry, it is often used as a preservative. In addition to all of the above, copper sulfate is used for the manufacture of paints, for conducting high-quality reactions to cations of zinc, manganese and magnesium.
Copper sulfate crystals
An interesting and exciting activity for children is growing crystals from a variety of substances. The raw material for such an entertaining experiment can be many different compounds, including table salt, and copper sulfate. The properties of this substance allow you to grow a large crystal from its powder, purchased at any store for gardeners. To do this, you will not need to exert too much effort. To grow a crystal of copper sulfate, you need to take any capacity. Pour water into it and pour the powder itself, while heating the liquid to facilitate faster dissolution of the substance in it. It is necessary to add copper sulfate, as long as it is possible to dissolve in water. Thus we get a very saturated solution. Then you can leave it like that, simply covering it with something, or you can fix a thread on the inside of the lid with a bead or button suspended on it so that it hangs evenly - this way the crystals will grow on the thread, and not at the bottom of the container. It is necessary to ensure that it is not moved from place to place, otherwise nothing will work. Every day or every few days, a little bit of copper should be added to the solution to maintain high saturation so that the crystals do not begin to dissolve in water again. After about two weeks of such manipulations, if everything is done correctly, you can get a fairly large crystal.
Copper sulfate. Qualitative reactions carried out with its help
Using this substance, it is possible to determine the presence of zinc cations. If copper sulfate is added to the solution, and a cloudy precipitate falls out, it means that zinc compounds are contained there. Also, with the help of the substance in question, the presence of magnesium cations can be determined. In this case, a precipitate will also precipitate in the solution.
How to determine that there is copper sulfate in the solution?
The most common qualitative reaction that can be carried out at home is the interaction of the solution with iron. You can take any iron product. If, after lowering it for a while in the solution, you will see a reddish coating on it, then copper sulfate is present. This plaque is copper, which has settled on an iron product. Iron sulfate, which is also released as a result of this substitution reaction, goes into the test solution. Another, less accessible option for determining the presence of a given substance in a solution is a reaction with any soluble barium salt. In this case, barium sulfate will precipitate. You can also test using any aluminum product in the same way as the first reaction described. In this case, a reddish coating should also form, which indicates the substitution by aluminum atoms of cuprum atoms and the formation of aluminum sulfate and pure copper.
Briefly summarizing everything written above, we can say that copper sulfate is a very widespread and well-known substance that is used in many areas of human life. It can be used both in various industries and at home: for entertainment purposes or for caring for plants. Also, this substance is popular with people who breed fish - it protects the aquarium from contamination with microalgae. Cuprum sulfate is easy to obtain in the laboratory. It has a low cost, as a result of which it has received such wide distribution and is used for a variety of purposes.
And salt is in copper
There is a group of metals on Earth, thanks to which mankind itself took place. Copper takes its place of honor in this group. Like metal, it is widely used today. Thanks to copper, the electric revolution has largely taken place, which has created the foundations of modern industry.
But copper is used not only in industry, it and its compounds are constantly in demand in agriculture, and in medicine, and in everyday life. In particular, these words can be fully attributed to the most important copper salt - copper sulfate CuSO4.
Being the strongest electrolyte, CuSO4 is small white crystals that are readily soluble in water. Copper sulphate has neither taste nor smell. The positive properties of this substance should also include its incombustibility.
When in contact with the smallest amount of moisture, copper sulfate reacts with it, resulting in the formation of copper sulfate pentahydrate CuSO4 • 5H2O, better known as copper sulfate. This substance is distinguished by the bright blue color of the crystals.
The most important salt
Copper sulfate is usually obtained by dissolving copper waste in dilute sulfuric acid. As a result of the reaction Cu (OH) 2 + H2SO4 → CuSO4 + H2O, copper sulfate is obtained.
An interesting feature of copper sulfate - to change color in the presence of water - is used to determine the presence of moisture in organic liquids. In laboratory conditions, ethanol is dehydrated with copper sulfate.
CuSO4 • 5H2O sulphate is widely used in agriculture for dressing cereals before sowing, for controlling harmful spores of fungi, destroying grape aphids, treating plants for fungal diseases, and in many other cases. Most often, copper sulfate is used in combination with milk of lime in the so-called Bordeaux mixture.
Copper sulfate is also widely used in construction. It is used to eliminate leaks, neutralize rust spots. It is used to remove salts from masonry, concrete and plastered surfaces. Copper sulfate is also used as an antiseptic for wood processing to prevent rot.
Found copper sulfate application in medical practice, as a medicine. It is prescribed as solutions for washing, douching, treating burns, especially those obtained from burning phosphorus. Copper sulfate solutions are used as eye drops. For internal use, copper sulfate is used as an emetic.