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Title: Sodium carbonate—From natural resources to Leblanc and back
Authors: Wisniak, Jaime
Issue Date: Jan-2003
Publisher: NISCAIR-CSIR, India
Abstract: The development of sodium carbonate as a major commodity is intimately attached to the chemical revolution that took place in the eighteenth and nineteenth century. Strong political and economical reasons led to the search of synthetic procedures to replace the natural sources of soda that were available by the seventeenth century. Eventually Nicolas Leblanc developed a synthetic process that used common salt as raw material. Implementation of Leblanc’s procedure led to such serious environmental problems, e.g., acid rain, that the first laws for environmental protection were enacted in England. Treatment of the obnoxious gaseous, liquid, and solid wastes of the process resulted in new processes for the manufacture of chlorine and sulphur. Leblanc's process came to an end with the development of the Solvay process. Eventually, the discovery of huge fields of natural sodium carbonate in the U.S. led to the decline of the Solvay process.
Page(s): 99-112
ISSN: 0975-0991 (Online); 0971-457X (Print)
Appears in Collections:IJCT Vol.10(1) [January 2003]

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