Caustic Soda (NaOH)

Caustic Soda

NaOH was first collected by soap makers.Soap making recipe,noted in an Arab book (13th century) that compiled by king of Yemen.
The recipe was for passing water oft by a mixture of soda or in Arabic alkali. Soda ash got from salt-wort plants because this planets are rich in sodium.  sodium alkali specially was impure sodium carbonate and quicklime (calcium oxide, CaO). This process was generate a solution of sodium hydroxide that also called Caustic Soda. In addition, European soap makers followed this recipe. In 1791 Nicolas Leblanc (the French chemist and surgeon), patented a process for mass-producing sodium carbonate, natural “soda ash” .

By the 20th century, the electrolysis of sodium chloride had become one of mostly method for producing NaOH.

What is Caustic Soda ?

Sodium hydroxide, also known as lye and caustic soda, is an inorganic compound with the formula NaOH. Sodium Hydroxide Flakes are white solid ionic compound consisting of sodium cations Na+ , also hydroxide anions OH−
This flakes are highly caustic base and alkali that decomposes proteins at ordinary ambient temperatures and may cause severe chemical burns. Furthermore It`s highly soluble in water, and readily absorbs moisture and carbon dioxide from the air.

It forms a series of hydrates NaOH·nH2O. The mono-hydrate NaOH·H2O crystallizes from water solutions between 12.3 and 61.8 °C. The commercially available “sodium hydroxide” is often this mono-hydrate, and published data may refer to it instead of the anhydrous compound. As simple hydroxides, employs beside neutral water and hydro-chloric acid to demonstrate the PH.

(NaOH) is known as caustic soda or lye, is a highly versatile substance used in variety of manufacturing processes. Sodium hydroxide is co-product of chlorine production. It`s main type is caustic soda flake.

Industrial NaOH produced as a 50% solution by variations of the electrolytic chlor-alkali process. Finally Chlorine gas is the last product. In addition solid NaOH get by vaporation of water of solution. Solid sodium hydroxide is most commonly sold as flakes, prills, cast blocks and lye.

General Information Description

At room temperature, anhydrous sodium hydroxide is a white crystalline, odorless solid that absorbs moisture from the air. When dissolved in water or neutralized with acid, it liberates substantial heat, which may be sufficient to ignite combustible materials.

Routes of Exposure Inhalation

Inhalation of sodium hydroxide dust, mist, or aerosol may cause irritation of the mucous membranes of the nose, throat, and respiratory tract. Sodium hydroxide is odorless; thus, odor provides no warning of hazardous concentrations. Mucous membrane irritation occurs at the OSHA PEL (2 mg/m3) and is generally an adequate warning property for acute exposure to sodium hydroxide. However, workers exposed to prolonged or recurrent mists or aerosols of sodium hydroxide can become somewhat tolerant of the irritant effects. Sodium hydroxide of sufficient strength can hydrolyze proteins in tissues and can kill cells in tissues.

Children exposed to the same levels of sodium hydroxide in air as adults may receive a larger dose because they have greater lung surface area:body weight ratios and increased minute volumes:weight ratios. In addition, they exposed to higher levels than adults in same location. Because of their short stature and higher levels of sodium hydroxide in air found nearer to ground.

Skin/Eye Contact

Children are more vulnerable to toxicants affecting the skin because of their relatively larger surface area: body weight ratio.
Exposure to sodium hydroxide solid or solution can cause skin and eye irritation. Direct contact with the solid or with concentrated solutions causes thermal and chemical burns leading to deep-tissue injuries. Very strong solutions of sodium hydroxide can hydrolyze proteins in the eyes, leading to severe burns and eye damage or, in extreme cases, blindness.

NaOH physical properties and usages

Sodium Hydroxide Uses

It`s uses as raw materials in manufactures, such as paper, aluminum, commercial drain, cleaners, soap and detergents.

Cleaning & Disinfectant Products:
Caustic soda is used to manufacture soaps and detergents. Also in home applications. Chlorine bleach is produced by combining chlorine and sodium hydroxide. Drain cleaners that contain sodium hydroxide convert fats and grease that can clog pipes into soap, which dissolves in water.

Pharmaceuticals & Medicine

It uses to help manufacture a variety of medicines and pharmaceutical products, from common pain relievers like aspirin, to anticoagulants that can help to prevent blood clots, to cholesterol-reducing medications.


In the energy sector, NaOH uses in fuel cell production. Fuel cells work like batteries to cleanly and efficiently produce electricity for a range of applications, including transportation; materials handling; and stationary, portable and emergency backÇ

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