How is Sodium Carbonate manufactured in Industries?

How is Sodium Carbonate manufactured in Industries?

09 November 2022


Since sodium carbonate dissolves in water, it is sometimes found in the deposits of minerals that are left behind after seasonal lakes dry up. Since ancient times, when it was first utilised in the mummification process for the production of glass, natron has been mined from the bottoms of dry lakes in Egypt.


Rarely found in its anhydrous mineral state, natrite is the name for sodium carbonate. Sodium carbonate also erupts from Tanzania's distinctive volcano Ol Doinyo Lengai and is thought to have surfaced up from other volcanoes before, because of the instability of these minerals at the earth's surface, erosion is believed to have eroded them away. In addition to the three sodium carbonate minerals, ultra-alkaline pegmatitic rocks, like those found on the Kola Peninsula in Russia, are a known source of trona, trisodium hydrogendicarbonate dihydrate.


Sodium carbonate is extremely rare on other planets. Ceres' brilliant spots have been traced back to deposits, which are thought to be material carried to the surface from deeper within the planet. While it is known that carbonates exist on Mars and it is highly likely to include sodium carbonate in that list, still this theory has not yet been proven. This is a mystery that has been explained by some as the result of low pH in previously watery Martian soil. Palvi FZE ranks among the leading Sodium Carbonate suppliers in Turkey that can fulfil all of your industrial chemical requirements.


How is Sodium Carbonate manufactured in Industries?


Trona, or trisodium hydrogendicarbonate dihydrate (Na3HCO3CO3·2H2O), is a mineral that accounts for virtually all of the United States' annual sodium carbonate usage. Mines in North America are now more cost-effective than factories because of the discovery of huge natural resources in 1938 near the Green River, Wyoming.


Turkey has substantial trona reserves and has already mined two million tonnes of soda ash from them near the capital city of Ankara. Some alkaline lakes, including Kenya's Lake Magadi, are mined for it through dredging. Since the salt in the lake is constantly being replenished by hot saline springs, the source is entirely sustainable so long as the rate of dredging does not exceed the replenishment rate.


Barilla and kelp:


Sources of impure sodium carbonate were primarily limited to plants and seaweeds known as "halophytes" (salt-tolerant plants) until they became the primary source in Europe and abroad. Harvested, dried, and burned plants from land or sea were used. Lixiviation, or washing with water, produced an alkaline solution from the ashes. The final product, referred to as "soda ash," was made by boiling this solution until it evaporated; this name came from “Soda” - an Arabic word, which was used for salsola soda, one of the several species of seashore plants used in the manufacturing process.


Soda ash had a wide range of sodium carbonate concentrations, from 2% in the seaweed-derived form (called "kelp") to 30% in the best barilla made from saltwort plants in Spain. By the end of the 18th century, plant and seaweed supplies for soda ash and the associated alkali "potash" had become increasingly inadequate, prompting a quest for commercially feasible techniques to synthesise soda ash from salt as well as various other chemicals.


Leblanc process:


Coal, limestone, sulfuric acid, as well as salt were used in Nicolas Leblanc's 1792 synthesis of sodium carbonate. To begin the Mannheim process, sodium chloride is exposed to sulfuric acid. It is sodium sulphate as well as hydrogen chloride that are the products of this process.


2NaCl + H2SO4 → Na2SO4 + 2HCl


Coal was used to accelerate the reduction of the salt cake as well as crushed calcium carbonate. You'll need to do two things for this transformation to take effect. The first is a carbothermic process, in which carbon-containing coal converts sulphate to sulphide:


Na2SO4 + 2C → Na2S + 2CO2


In the second phase, calcium sulphide, as well as sodium carbonate, are formed through the following reaction:


Na2S + CaCO3 → Na2CO3 + CaS


Black ash is the name given to this compound. Black ash is processed into soda ash by adding water. When this extract is allowed to evaporate, solid sodium carbonate is produced. Lixiviating was the word for this kind of extraction. If you are looking for one of the most distinct Sodium Carbonate exporters in Turkey, Palvi FZE is the right place for you.


Leblanc process byproducts including hydrochloric acid and calcium sulphide posed disposal problems. Yet, until the late 1880s, this was still the primary means of producing sodium carbonate.


Solvay process:


By combining water, carbon dioxide, sodium chloride, as well as ammonia, Belgian industrial chemist Ernest Solvay discovered a way to produce sodium carbonate in 1861. This process also yields sodium bicarbonate and ammonium chloride.


NaCl + NH3 + CO2 + H2O → NaHCO3 + NH4Cl


To get sodium carbonate, the extracted sodium bicarbonate was heated, which caused the release of water and carbon dioxide.


2NaHCO3 → Na2CO3 + H2O + CO2


Meanwhile, ammonia was produced by reacting ammonium chloride with lime that had been produced in excess when making carbon dioxide.


2NH4Cl + CaO → 2NH3 + CaCl2 + H2O


The ammonia used in the Solvay process is reused. It produces just calcium chloride as a byproduct and uses only limestone as well as brine as inputs. Compared to the Leblanc method, which produces two waste products, this method is much more cost-effective. Sodium carbonate production around the world was swiftly dominated by the Solvay technique. Solvay process plants accounted for 90% of sodium carbonate production by 1900, and by the early 1920s, it was shut down.


Home cooks and restaurants often use the second phase of the Solvay process to produce sodium carbonate for use in food preparation. Baking soda, a common name for sodium bicarbonate, is commonly available to these consumers, and the 250 °F (121 °C) to 300 °F (149 °C) temperatures needed to get sodium carbonate by converting baking soda are easily attained in standard home ovens. Palvi FZE is an excellent Sodium Carbonate distributor in Turkey, that can meet your chemical needs for various processes.


Hou's process:


During the 1930s, a chemist from China, named Hou Debang discovered Hou’s process. Sodium bicarbonate was manufactured by pumping the byproduct of steam reforming, CO2, via a saturated solution of ammonia as well as sodium chloride.


CH4 + 2H2O → CO2 + 4H2


3H2 + N2 → 2NH3


NH3 + CO2 + H2O → NH4HCO3


NH4HCO3 + NaCl → NH4Cl + NaHCO3


Due to its low solubility, sodium bicarbonate is collected in the form of a precipitate and it is then heated to around 80°C or 95°C, which is the same as the final step of the Solvay process, to produce pure sodium carbonate. The leftover 30–40°C sodium as well as ammonium chloride solution is supplemented with further sodium chloride and ammonia pumping. The temperature of the solution is then decreased to less than 10 degrees Celsius. When compared to sodium chloride, ammonium chloride has a greater solubility at 30 °C but a lesser solubility at 10 °C. Ammonium chloride precipitates out of a sodium chloride solution because of the difference in temperature-dependent solubility as well as the common ion effect.