Saturated salt solutions are vital in the world. In the world of chemistry, saturated salt solutions are used, and more uses are being discovered daily. Often, people confuse saturated salt solutions with brines. However, the two vary in terms of their chemical composition, which is in their concentration. Brines are salts dissolved in a ratio of over 35,000mg/L. A saturated salt solution is a slushy mixture based on distilled water and a chemically pure salt of over 10,000mg/L but less than that of brine.
Saturated salt solutions vary in terms of functionality based on the chemically pure salt found in it. The most common saturated salt solution is that of Sodium Chloride (NaCl). However, several variations are available such as Lithium Chloride (LiCl) and Potassium Chloride (KCl), among others. The different saturated salt solutions can perform the same functions but at different wavelengths. They add to the scope of functionality in which the primary tasks of saturated salt solutions can be expanded to.
Where It Is Found
Chemically, saturated salt solutions can be made simply in a lab. Small scale production is taught in chemistry lessons at school. This can be done by measuring pure salt and a beaker of distilled water. The pure salt is then added to the distilled water and stirred. The end result is a salt-saturated solution.
However, at a large scale level, companies take accurate measurements of the desired salt and mix it in water. The large scale production of salt-saturated solutions is mostly done for sale or to put to industrial uses of the particular salt saturated substance.
Naturally, salt saturated solutions are not easily found as brines. It is not easy to find a well measured salt solution that is not too dilute or too concentrated. However, in saltwater bodies, saturated salt solutions can be found and collected or used.
Saturated salt solutions come in handy. They have few uses with which can be sub-classified, making one use seem a lot. Humidity is the order of the day when it comes to saturated aqueous solutions. When it comes to humidity detection and correction, the saturated salts do a splendid job. Different salts are used to detect and correct humidity at different levels. In other words, depending on the percentage of moisture, an additional salt will be used to detect and correct the situation. They are used to calibrate humidity sensors, and due to temperature variations, the salts can see different humidity levels.
Disposal and Safety
Sufficient ventilation is needed when handling aqueous saturated solutions. The ventilation is pivotal as different salts have different implications on respiration. Other essential chemical lab wear such as gloves and eyewear, should be used.
When it comes to disposal, salt solutions in saturated form can be re-used in plenty. When no longer needed, proper disposal should be done for the salts. Salt saturated solutions can cause pollution, especially if they undergo other chemical reactions. Proper disposal should always be done even for ‘safe’ chemical substances.