Phosphoric Acid: Common Application, Uses & Properties

January 14, 2021

Phosphoric acid is one of the common and most used acids and it is often referred to as phosphoric (V) acid or orthophosphoric acid. This acid's raw form is derived from phosphate rocks, while white phosphorus produces a more pure form industrially. Pure phosphoric acid is usually  in a solid-state and less condensed type of crystalline. Generally, it is a liquid which is colourless, syrupy, odourless, and non-volatile.

Phosphoric acid is a mineral acid containing of one phosphorus atom, four oxygen atoms, and three hydrogen atoms.

Phosphoric Acid Uses and Properties

Orthophosphoric acid is an essential chemical with many applications. It is used widely in agriculture, goods and several different industries . 

Let us have a look at some common uses of phosphoric acid here.

Removal of Rust

One of the many different acids widely used in removing rust from metals such as iron, steel, etc is phosphoric acid. When this acid is added, the reddish-brown iron transforms ferric oxide into a black-coloured compound that is now ferric phosphate and reacts with rust. The black ferric phosphate compound is simple to extract.

 Food and Beverage

 Phosphoric acid is also used as a food additive. In foods including jams, cereal bars, processed meats, cheese, etc., this acid serves as an acidity regulator. Phosphoric acid is used as an acidic agent in the beverage industry. It helps keep a check on the formation of fungi and bacteria. It also contributes to these drinks' flavour.

 Personal Care Products

 Phosphoric acid is essential for the manufacturing of a large variety of personal care items, cleaning items, bath products, fragrances, hair care products and dyes, nail products, lipstick, and other skincare products. Phosphoric acid is also used in regulating the pH level of these materials. However, it is essential to consult phosphoric acid suppliers to get a better understanding of its usage, applications as well as properties.

Used In Agriculture

Some studies indicate that approximately 80% of the phosphoric acid produced is used in fertilizer production. Phosphoric acid is also used in animal or poultry feed as an additive and as a flavouring agent.

Used In Pharmaceutical

 This acid is often used as an intermediate in pharmaceutical products. Dentistry is one of the key applications in which phosphoric acid is used. It is used as a solution for etching and is usually used to clean the teeth. Teeth whiteners or mouth washing liquids are other applications of phosphoric acid. Phosphoric acid is also widely used to derive and manufacture anti-nausea drugs.

Other Applications

There are many applications for phosphoric acid. In food flavourings, drinks, dental products, cosmetics, and skincare products, its non-toxic and slightly acidic nature is leveraged to produce an array of products. Industrially, it is primarily used to manufacture phosphate fertilizers.

Health Hazards/Health Effects

 Phosphoric acid  is non hazardous to the skin, and for drinking it is used in food, cosmetics and dental products. It is, however, corrosive at very high concentrations and may cause slight skin burns. However, it is advised to associate with reputed and reliable Phosphoric Acid manufacturers to be assured of its quality, features and pricing.

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