Sodium, might sound quite familiar to you. Especially for sodium chloride, or in another word, salt. Most of you might even deal with this stuff every single day, in the kitchen. It is useful as flavor to the fod, as a preservatives, and so much more. But, what about the other sodium? Sodium hyphophosphite, for example. Do you know that such compound exist and not so out of your reach, somehow?
What is Sodium Hyphophosphite?
Sodium hypophosphite (NaPO2H2) is one of the sodium salts of hyphophosphorus acid. This compound can also be found in monohydrate form. As sodium salt, it is also taking role as a strong reducing agent.
You might also read : Differences between Reduction and Oxidation
This sodium salt comes in three possible form, white–granule, colorless plates, and monoclinic crystals that is odorless.
However, if you taste this odorless compound, something that you probably wouldn’t want to do, it has that saline taste.
For the form, if it’s stored in room temperature, it will come off as solid compound. Yet, it has quite high solubility in both water and alcohol, and it can even absorbs moisture from the air. Although it’s soluble in water, it is not soluble in organic solutions. Dealing with fire, it’s not considered as a fire hazard, but it might produce flammable phosphine gas when heated.
Uses of Sodium Hyphophosphite
Here are few uses of sodium hyphophosphite that you need to know :
- Electroless nickel
Due to its strong reducing agent, it’s considered able to supply the electrons that EN process requires. This reductant role that sodium hyphophosphite takes, is essential to produce nickel plating. From the process called the EN process, the plating should occurs in uniform thickness, whether it’s on metal, plastic, glass, or even ceramics.
Not just spread evenly, this hard-surface film will be resistant to abrasion. This nickel-phosphorus film can be used in aviation, electronics, and petroleum field.
- Reducing agent
This point might seems so obvious that we already know its ptoperties. Its ability as reducing agent gives this compound suitable role as a reducing agent or antioxidant in chemical processing.
- Analytical reagent
Sodium Hyphophosphate can be used as analytical reagent. What is analytical reagent? Well, what’s reagent anyway? Reagent is a compound that’s being added to a system to cause chemical reaction.
However, this differs from catalyst. If catalyst works by decreasing the activation energy to fasten the process, but isn’t being consumed, in this case reagent is being consumed by the chemical reactions. Analytical reagent itself is useful in research where high purity is needed.
- Chemical Intermediate
Sodium hyphophosphite is considered as one of the chemical intermediates that can be used as the raw material of other synthetic organics production such as deamination. One of the products that it takes roles in its production is hyphophosphorus acid, chemical compound that can be used as a catalyst, bleaching agent, color stabilizer, and so much more.
- Polymerization catalyst
Catalyst, almost in every chemical reactions, has the same usage. It works the same way, speeding up the reactions by cutting off the activation energy required, including in the polymerization reactions. Polymerization reactions itself is a reactions that turns monomers into a large chain or network molecule known as polymer.
The formation of those polymers, that’s the essence of polymerization reactions. If maybe you’re wondering what’s that thing called polymer is, it’s actually so close to you in your everyday life. You can find polymer in the protein you have inside your own body, in pvc, in many household products, and so on.
You might want to read : List of Chemicals in Plastic
- Polymer stabilizer
Again, it works along with the compound we called polymer. This time, not as the catalyst agent, but as a stabilizer. Sodium hyphophosphite will prevent degradation or discoloration of polymers while being heated or during extrusion.
- Flame retardant
Sodium hyphophosphite is one of the chemicals that are added to plastic, textiles as a flame retardant. Here, it takes role to prevent or basically slowing the ignition whereas there are course of ignitions.
- Partial Fire retardant
Although it sounds quite similar, almost the same, it’s different from flame retardant somehow. While flame retardant prevents ignition, fire retardant works by slowing or stopping the spread of fire or by reducing the intensity.
Both works together to reduce flammability, cooling down the fuel, thus delaying the combustion process. Here, one of the example of partial fire retardant is, of course, sodium hyphophosphite.
- Ion Exchange Resin
Here, sodium hyphophosphite will work as a source of electrons in resin regeneration. An ion exchange resin is in an insoluble matrix form, with white or yellowish color.
- Meat preservative
- Water treatment agent
- Construction materials
- Electronic products
- Automotive industry (treating surfaces)
Indeed, that’s all uses of sodium hyphophosphite in everyday life!
Every chemical have their own strength, their own unique properties that determine their uses in many differents fields. However, since they’re chemical, they somehow have their own characteristic that we need to pay attention to, since they might harm us, human, or even our living place, the environment, there are Harmful Chemicals in the Environment.
While, for human, there are chemicals that might let us experience these Usual Signs of Overexposure to Hazardous Chemicals. So, here are few things you need to take extra care whenever you’re working with sodium hyphophosphite :
- Store in cool, dry place
- Isolate from oxidizing materials to avoid explosion
- Avoid mixing it with sodium nitrate
Read also : Sodium Nitrate Common Uses
- Avoid mixing it with potassium nitrate
- Avoid heating
- Skin corrosion, it will irritate the skin if exposed
- Irritating respiratory tract
- Avoid exposure to eye, it might cause eye irritation
Once you know, you’ll consider yourself lucky. That doesn’t only works in love life, though it works perfectly well in dealing with chemicals. When you know the power of sodium hyphophosphite, you’ll then also understand where can you find it, what are its uses in daily life.
Then, you can take the benefits and of course, avoid the damage it might cause by paying attention to precautions.