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Sodium hydroxide

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Sodium hydroxide
Systematic name Sodium hydroxide
Other names Lye, Caustic Soda
Molecular formula NaOH
Molar mass molar mass::39.9971 g/mol
Appearance White solid
CAS number CAS number::1310-73-2
Density and phase [[density::2.1 g/cm3]], solid
Solubility in water 111 g/100 ml (20°C)
Melting point Melting point::318°C (591 K)c
Boiling point Boiling point::1390°C (1663 K)
Basicity (pKb) -2.43
MSDS MSDS Data External MSDS
Main hazards

may cause chemical burns
permanent injury or scarring

NFPA 704

NFPA 704 svg.png

Flash point Non-flammable.
R/S statement


Related compounds
Related Ammonia, lime.

Sodium Hydroxide is a common chemical base. It is white and crystal-like at room temperature, odorless solid or liquid 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. It is used a lot mixed together with other solution. Sodium hydroxide is very corrosive. It can be extremely dangerous if not used with caution. [1]


Sodium Hydroxide is a clear, colorless liquid. The boiling point is at 212 deg F. And the freezing point,32 deg F. It is soluble and has the molecular formula of KOH and it's molecular weight, 56.10.[2]


Sodium occurs in many materials such as: Pain stripper, gold pennies, aluminum production, chemical analysis, soap production, paper making, bio-diesel, aluminum etching, food preparation, domestic uses, tissue digestion, illegal drugs, and cleaning. [3]


Generating hydrogen and pretty colors from salt water. Bottom left yellow: Chloride, Top left pink: Sodium hydroxide + phenolphthalein, Top right yellow: Chloride, Bottom right prussian blue: potassium ferrocyanide with iron from the steel electrode

Sodium hydroxide has many uses and can be a big part of our lives. Sodium Hydroxide is a base used in many common things such as drain cleaners. It is also a component in lye soap and used commonly when processing food. [1] It is also used as a buffering agent in many different personal care products such as fragrances, hair coloring products, skin care products and countless other things people use on a daily basis. [2] is also used in the process of turning wood into paper by adding it to a mixture to help dissolve the properties of wood that are unwanted in paper. [3]

First Aid Measures

In case of inhalation, sure to breath fresh air; but if breathing is difficult, give oxygen and call a physician. If ingested, try not to induce vomiting and drink a lot of milk, water, or anything else that's available to drink. And get medical attention immediately. If contacted with skin flush skin with plenty of water for at least fifteen minutes. Also remove any type of clothing that could have been contaminated. Call a physician, immediately. If eyes have been contacted, flush them out immediately for at least fifteen minutes with plenty of water. Be sure to lift up your eyelids while washing in order for the contaminant to be completely wash out. Even if you think that you got all the contaminates out, call a physician immediately. [4]


Sodium hydroxide is produced commercially by electrolysis, sending a direct current through an aqueous solution of sodium chloride. Hydrogen gas is released at the negative pole and chlorine gas is released at the positive pole. At the end of the electrolysis, the solution contains sodium hydroxide.[4] The process is illustrated above:

2NaCl(aq) + 2H2O(l) -(electrolysis)-> H2(g) + Cl2(g) + 2NaOH(aq)


  1. Unknown Author. Sodium Hydroxide Weebly. Web.Accessed November 20, 2016.
  2. unknown author. Sodium Hydroxide truth in aging. Web. Accessed November 20, 2016.
  3. Unknown Author. Sodium Hydroxide essential chemical industry . Web. Accessed November 20, 2016.
  4. Ebbing, Darrell D.; Gammon, Steven D (2009). General Chemistry (9th ed.). Boston: Houghton Mifflin Company. p. 643. ISBN 978-0-618-85748-7. 

External links