Copper sulfate is an inorganic compound that has long been used in a variety of industries. It is a common ingredient in agricultural chemicals, as it works as a fungicide and fertilizer to help control bacteria and fungus growth on plants.
It also has many uses in the industrial sector, such as in dyes, electric batteries, pigments and a reagent for analytical chemistry. It is also used in wood preservatives, medicine and as a reagent for engraving and lithography.
The hydrated form of copper sulfate, pentahydrate, is blue in color and forms triclinic crystals. Anhydrous copper sulfate, on the other hand, is a white powder that turns blue when water is added to it.
When this happens, a d-d transition takes place in its structure and it emits a blue light. This is an unusual characteristic for a dry solid.
Chemical Reactions and Formula
A simple method for preparing copper sulfate is to mix metallic copper with a solution of sulphuric acid. The reaction produces copper sulfate and hydrogen gas.
Another common method for producing copper sulfate is to mix sulfuric acid with oxides of copper. The reaction produces copper sulfate, hydrogen gas and sulfur trioxide. The most commonly produced compound is pentahydrate, which is blue in color and has octahedral molecular geometry. It is also paramagnetic and highly exothermic. It is used in a variety of chemical tests, including Fehling’s and Benedict’s solutions, which test for reducing sugars and the Biuret reagent, which tests for proteins.