What is selenium powder and what is it used for?


Jul 30, 2023

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Selenium powder Selenium is a chemical element with the symbol Se and atomic number 34. It is a nonmetal (more rarely considered a metalloid) with properties that are intermediate between the elements above and below in the periodic table, sulfur and tellurium, and also has similarities to arsenic. It rarely occurs in its elemental state or as pure ore compounds in the Earth’s crust. Selenium powder is soluble in concentrated sulfuric acid and chloroform, slightly soluble in carbon disulfide, toxic, insoluble in water and ethanol. Selenium powder is usually in powder or granular form, with pure appearance, consistent color, purity up to 99.99%, no impurities such as soil, stable composition, and uniform moisture.
Selenium Application
Selenium is found in metal sulfide ores, where it partially replaces the sulfur. Commercially, selenium is produced as a byproduct in the refining of these ores, most often during production. Minerals that are pure selenide or selenate compounds are known but rare. The chief commercial uses for selenium today are glassmaking and pigments. Selenium is a semiconductor and is used in photocells. Applications in electronics, once important, have been mostly replaced with silicon semiconductor devices. Selenium is still used in a few types of DC power surge protectors and one type of fluorescent quantum dot.
Although trace amounts of selenium are necessary for cellular function in many animals, including humans, both elemental selenium and (especially) selenium salts are toxic in even small doses, causing selenosis. Selenium is listed as an ingredient in many multivitamins and other dietary supplements, as well as in infant formula, and is a component of the antioxidant enzymes glutathione peroxidase and thioredoxin reductase (which indirectly reduce certain oxidized molecules in animals and some plants) as well as in three deiodinase enzymes. Selenium requirements in plants differ by species, with some plants requiring relatively large amounts and others apparently requiring none.

Selenium powder Preparation
Selenium is a rare element. There is no independent selenium production plant in the world. Generally, selenium is associated with the electrolysis of copper and nickel, which is present in the electrolytic anode mud. There are many methods to recover and purify selenium and tellurium from copper electrolysis anode mud: caustic oxidative pressure leaching, oxidative roasting and high-temperature leaching, low-temperature oxidative roasting, dilute sulfuric acid leaching, etc. The reduction of selenium and tellurium mostly adopts sulfur dioxide reduction and copper reduction. method. Due to the pre-roasting and oxidation method, the equipment is more complicated and the maintenance cost of power equipment is high, the sulfur dioxide gas is more harmful to the human body and the environment, and the recovery rate and purity of selenium and tellurium. Using H2O2 as the oxidant, oxidize selenium and tellurium in a weak acid solution, adjust the pH to separate selenium and tellurium after solid-liquid separation, and reduce selenium and tellurium with Na2SO3 under hydrochloric acid acidification. The recovery rates of selenium and tellurium are 99% and 98%, respectively. The purity can reach 99%.
Selenium Powder Toxicity
The inhalation of selenium compounds causes respiratory membrane irritation, pulmonary edema, bronchial inflammation, and pneumonia. Elemental selenium powder exposure also produces mucous membrane irritation, bleeding from the nose, and coughing, among other symptoms.

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