FeCl3 is an industrial scale commodity chemical compound with a number of physical and chemical properties, used in many sectors of the economy. It is also used as an oxidant and a test for phenols. It is made by reacting dry chlorine with iron ore at 500 to 700 degrees Celsius. This article will discuss the structure of fecl3, its physical and chemical properties, as well as its uses in industry, medicine, and laboratories.
The ionic compound fecl3 consists of a ferric ion Fe3+ and three chloride ions Cl- in an oxidation state of +3. It is an orange to blackish brown crystalline solid with a high melting point. It is soluble in water, forming a dark green to light brown solution that has a faint hydrochloric acid (HCl) smell and is corrosive to many metals.
It is used in a variety of processes, including extracting copper (II) from copper sulphide ores. It is also used as a flocculant in sewage treatment and drinking water production. It forms clumps that adsorb suspended particles and precipitate them for easy removal from water, such as sulfide, phosphate, arsenic in the form of arsenate, and other organic matter.
It is also a strong depressant for a variety of mineral processes, such as barite-celestite separation and niobium-zirconium separation. It is also non-combustible and is commonly used in sewage treatment and water filtration. It is hygroscopic in its dehydrated state and partially hydrolyzes, releasing HCl and forming mists of hydrogen chloride in moist air. It is also corrosive to skin and mucous membranes, making it a health risk when handling it.