Manganese oxide is the inorganic compound with the chemical formula MnO2. It is blackish or brown and occurs naturally as the mineral pyrolusite, which is the main ore of manganese. The most popular industrial application of manganese oxide is as a component in dry cell batteries (known as alkaline batteries or d Leclanche cells) which account for a large portion of the global annual consumption of this substance.
The cations and anions of manganese oxide are octahedrally coordinated. These ions are present in small cubic green crystals that are insoluble in water, but soluble in acids.
They undergo a number of chemical reactions to become manganese salts and water as they interact with acids. This is similar to the process for a typical ionic oxide which undergoes oxidation with acids.
Aside from its oxidation and reduction properties, manganese oxide is useful as an oxidizing agent for several organic compounds and can be reacted with hydrogen peroxide to produce potassium permanganate (KP). It is also used as a catalyst in the production of allyl alcohols, paints and colored glass.
In addition to its use in battery cathode mixes and electronics, manganese dioxide is a common pigment in glass, ceramics, enamels and pottery. It is also an important additive for fertilizers, veterinary medicines and livestock feed.
Manganese oxide is commonly available in pellets, pieces, powder, sputtering targets, tablets and nanopowder (from American Elements’ nanoscale production facilities). It is useful in a wide variety of applications from simple ceramic structures to advanced electronics and lightweight structural components in aerospace and electrochemical applications such as fuel cells in which it exhibits ionic conductivity.