What is sulfuric acid?
Sulfuric acid, formerly called vitriolic, is a mineral acid composed of elements like sulfur, oxygen, and hydrogen, and its chemical formula is H2SO4. It is a colorless, odorless, high-viscosity liquid that is soluble in water and the reaction of combining it with water is very exothermic.
Sulfuric acid is a very strong mineral acid that occurs naturally in gases emitted from volcanoes and dissolves in water at any percentage. Its reaction with water is extremely exothermic, so the sudden addition of water should be avoided. Sulfuric acid has a high affinity for water, so that in reaction with other substances, hydrogen and oxygen separate them as water. Sulfuric acid is corrosive and makes up the bulk of acid rain. Water droplets react with pollutants of factories and cars that are suspended in the air during rain and produce acid. Sulfuric acid reacts with metals, and the higher the temperature, the higher the reaction rate, but it has no effect on mercury or lead. Sulfuric acid is on the list of dangerous substances.
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Production of sulfuric acid in the Middle East
The main method of commercial production of sulfuric acid is that sulfur dioxide is first prepared from sulfur. Sulfur dioxide is then converted to sulfur trioxide in the process of catalytic oxidation, and then concentrated sulfuric acid is produced by the sulfur trioxide reaction with water.
Therefore, this type of sulfuric acid production is known as forced production. In basic metal smelting units, sulfur dioxide gas (SO2) is produced during the process of smelting or roasting sulfide concentrates of metals such as copper, zinc and lead. Melting units mainly convert output sulfur-containing gas from the melting furnaces into sulfuric acid.
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Sulfuric acid trade
An examination of the international trade rate of sulfuric acid shows that only a small share of about 7% of total global supply and demand is traded on trade routes. The main reason for this is the corrosive nature of this chemical and the high cost of port infrastructure and transportation. In addition, optional acid-producing units are always constructed next to consumer markets so that they do not have to worry about shipping.
However, demand for sulfuric acid will grow at a slight annual rate. Demand for sulfuric acid can be expected to grow significantly as a result of production leap in the chemical fertilizer industry.
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Middle East Sulfuric Acid Market
In the Middle East, the sulfuric acid market is controlled by domestic demand. The production capacity of sulfuric acid in the country is about 2.1 million tons, of which only one third is actually operating.
Jozpiri continued: "Sulfuric acid, due to its nature, despite the production and supply of 277 million tons in the world, only possesses 7% of exports and imports and the rest is used locally in the producing country.
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Applications of sulfuric acid
The main application of sulfuric acid is in the production of phosphate fertilizers. The strategic importance of sulfuric acid is in line with this.
Sulfuric acid is a major component in various types of batteries. The acid of battery contains 35% H2SO4. These types of batteries include high-power batteries such as batteries in hospital imaging equipment, car batteries, agricultural equipment batteries, and so on.
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Sulfuric acid packaging and storage
Due to the corrosive nature of sulfuric acid, a storage tank should be prepared for it which is not corrosive and has sufficient resistance against chemicals.
Sulfuric acid (even in small amounts) should be kept away from other chemicals, especially organic materials, nitrates, chlorates, carbides, peroxides, metal powders, oxidizing chemicals and flammable substances, also be careful that smoking and generating any flame near the storage site should be strictly avoided.
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