Borax

From Academic Kids

Properties
General
Name Sodium tetraborate decahydrate
Chemical formula Na2B4O7·10H2O
Appearance White solid
Physical
Formula weight 381.4 amu
Melting point Decomposes at 348 K (75 °C)
Density 1.7 ×103 kg/m3
Crystal structure monoclinic (Spacegroup C2/c) for the decahydrate
Solubility 55 g in 100g water
Thermochemistry
ΔfH0solid -6289kJ/mol
S0solid 586 J/mol·K
Safety
Ingestion GI irritation, large doses may be fatal.
Inhalation May cause irritation.
Skin May cause irritation.
Eyes May cause irritation.
More info Hazardous Chemical Database (http://ull.chemistry.uakron.edu/erd/chemicals/9/8558.html)
SI units were used where possible. Unless otherwise stated, standard conditions were used.
Disclaimer and references

Borax, (Na2B4O7·10H2O, sodium borate or sodium tetraborate) is an important boron compound. It is a soft white many-sided crystal that dissolves easily in water. If left exposed to dry air, it slowly loses its water of hydration and becomes the white chalky mineral tincalconite (Na2B4O7·5H2O). Commercially sold borax is usually partially dehydrated.

Missing image
Borax_ball.jpg
Borax "cottonball"

Borax occurs naturally in evaporite deposits produced by the repeated evaporation of seasonal lakes (see playa). The most commercially important deposits are found near Boron, California and other locations in the American southwest, the Atacama desert in Chile, and in Tibet. Borax may also be produced synthetically from other boron compounds.

Missing image
Reagan_Boraxo.gif
Ronald Reagan advertising borax

Borax is widely used in detergents, water softeners, soaps, disinfectants, and pesticides. It is used in making enamel glazes, glass and strengthening pottery and ceramics. It is also easily converted to boric acid or borate, which have many applications.

A mixture of borax and ammonium chloride is used as a flux when welding iron and steel. It lowers the melting point of the unwanted iron oxide (scale), allowing it to run off.

Borax is also used mixed with water as a flux when soldering gold, silver etc. in jewelry. It allows the molten solder to flow evenly over the joint in question. Borax is an ingredient in Slime.

See also

es:Brax fr:Borax it:Borace nl:Borax ja:ホウ砂 pl:Boraks pt:Brax

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