What is ammonium chloride?
NH4Cl is an inorganic compound with the chemical name of ammonium chloride. Its pure form, crystalline salt, is white. It is very soluble in water and easily forms a slightly acidic solution. The history of this dates back to the period of the 9th decade when Egyptian Arabs managed to discover this compound by burning camel dung.
It is colorless and odorless and has a bitter and unpleasant taste. This is compound of an acid with normal acidity level and it can be easily dissolved in water. Its molecular weight is 53.5 and it can usually be found as a solution in water, glycerin and a little alcohol and its sublimation temperature is 350 degrees Celsius.
The history of the creation
It was mentioned for the first time in China in 554 (after Christ) At that time, was produced in two ways: vents under burnt coal in Central Asia, especially the Tien Shan mountain range (along the Xinjiang province in northwestern China and Kyrgyzstan) and the Alai mountain range in the southwest. Kyrgyzstan, or the smokestack of the Taftan volcano in southeastern Iran. (In fact, the word ammonium chloride or neshader in several Asian languages is derived from the Iranian word anosh adur (eternal fire), which refers to underground fires.) Then traveled along the Silk Road eastward to China and westward to China. It was transported to Muslim lands and Europe. Around 800 (after Christ), Egyptian Arabs discovered neshadar in soot, which was caused by burning camel dung, and this source became an alternative to sources in Central Asia.
How it is made?
Ammonium chloride is obtained from the reaction of hydrochloric acid and ammonia and is known as an organic compound in its natural and mineral form. The natural and mineral form of that is called ammonia. Its mineral type is obtained from the incomplete burning of coal, the condensation of gases derived from it, and also from some volcanoes. The mineral ammonium chloride is called sal ammoniac.
Ammonium chloride is produced as one of the process products for the production of sodium carbonate.
This compound can also be prepared on an industrial scale by reacting ammonia with hydrochloric acid or hydrogen chloride gas.
Ammonium chloride in drilling mud
Ammonium chloride (NH4Cl) is sometimes used in drilling operations as a clay stabilizer and shale inhibitor. When added to drilling mud, ammonium chloride can help prevent the swelling of clay particles, which can cause borehole instability and other problems.
Ammonium chloride works by exchanging ions with the clay minerals in the formation, which reduces the ability of the clay to absorb water and swell. This, in turn, helps to prevent borehole collapse and improve wellbore stability.
In addition to its use as a clay stabilizer, ammonium chloride can also be used as a source of nitrogen in some drilling fluids. Nitrogen can help to reduce the density of the drilling fluid, which can be useful in certain formations where excessive pressure can cause problems.
It has many applications in agriculture and related industries. The most common use of it as a source of nitrogen is in the production of agricultural fertilizers, including ammonium chloride phosphate. This application includes almost 90% of this produced in the world. Among the agricultural products that are cultivated and produced in this way are rice and wheat.
Industry and metalworking sector
It is an important compound in the industrial sector and has many applications. One of its applications is in the metalworking industry. This compound is used as a metal preparation flux to create a tin coating, galvanizing or soldering. It can clean the surface of the desired parts by reacting with metal oxides and forming an active metal chloride.
It is a combined expectorant and diuretic. Usually, this combination is used in the preparation of cough syrups, which can cause the production of excess fluid in the respiratory tract and increase phlegm due to the irritating effect it has on the respiratory bronchial mucosa.
Ammonium salts in this composition irritate the stomach lining and cause nausea and vomiting in a person. Ammonium chloride is used in the pharmaceutical industry as a systematic acidic agent for the treatment of severe alkabometabolism and also for the treatment of urinary tract disorders.
In veterinary medicine, this compound is used to prevent the formation of urinary stones in animals such as goats and cows.
It is used in the food industry as yeast and acidifying agent in the baking industry. Also, this edible composition is used for cattle feed and nutrient building material for yeasts and micro-organisms. Also, it is used as a crunchy and flavoring agent in the production of sweets and cakes, industrial cookies and some carbonated drinks.
In the laboratory department, this combination is used in the cooling bath to create a low temperature.
The science of archeology
Another use of it is in archeology. The vapor of this compound is usually deposited on the fossils and a white layer of tiny and shiny crystals is produced which is safe.
Ammonium chloride in Battery industry
In the battery industry, this compound is widely used, and its most common use is in the dry battery industry and as an electrolyte. In the old days, these batteries are commercially used as local batteries in the customers’ commercial facilities. Native batteries in the new era are known as carbon zinc batteries, but ammonium chloride is still used for its electrolyte.
Other uses of ammonium chloride
In the electronic industry, the organic composition of ammonium chloride is used as an engraver in the manufacture of printed circuits and as an aid in soldering.
It is used as a dye in the textile and leather industry.
It is used in fireworks and another use of this compound is in electroplating.
Safety issues of this substance in storage and consumption
Safety measures must be followed when working with it. Some of these safety measures are:
In case of contact with the eyes: keep the eyes open and wash with water. Be sure to see an eye doctor.
Skin contact: wash your body completely and change the stained clothes.
Ingestion: Drink plenty of water and vomit. See a doctor.
Respiratory: It is better to use this compound in the open air so that it does not cause respiratory damage.
In addition to all the uses of it in different industries, all safety signs must be observed when using it. In case of contact with the skin and eyes, severe burns will occur, and in case of contact with water, wash it off and consult a doctor. Swallowing this compound causes serious damage to the stomach lining, and the person should immediately drink a few glasses of water and vomit. To prevent the risks and side effects of ammonium chloride and to work with it, it is necessary to observe the safety measures and use gloves and masks and use it in the open space.
Some of the major ammonium chloride exporting countries include
- South Korea
- United States
- United Kingdom
It can be loaded in container and trucks to anywhere of the world in 25 kg bags and jumbo bags.