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Common Sodium Formate Application and What to Look for during Purchases


Pentaerythritol is a polyol organic compound with the formula C5H12O4. It is soluble in water, methanol, glycerol, etc., with the appearance of white crystals; the molecular formula of dipentaerythritol is C10H22O7. It is slightly soluble in water and has the appearance of white crystalline powder.

Pentaerythritol and dipentaerythritol are used in the production of resins, lubricants, antioxidants, etc. They are also used as a raw material for the synthesis of rosin ester, which is commonly applied in paint, desiccants and adhesives, boasting a wide range of industrial and everyday applications.

Preparation of sodium formate

Common methods to prepare sodium formate include:

  1. Catalyzed reaction of sodium hydroxide with carbon monoxide
  2. Reacting chloroform with sodium hydroxide
  3. Obtained as a byproduct from pentaerythritol production from formaldehyde

Downstream products and Environment friendly

Alcohols and their derivatives are assembled from carbon, oxygen and hydrogen atoms, and do not easily cause ocean or land pollution. They can be obtained from natural gas and are soluble in organic solvents, making them an eco-friendly raw material. The downstream products are relatively easy to prepare and are highly economical, examples include formaldehyde, ethylene, pentaerythritol and sodium formate.

Common Applications for Sodium Formate

Sodium Formate is often used as a deicer for runways and roads in temperate and continental climate zones. The non-corrosive sodium formate can quickly penetrate solid snow and ice layers and melt the ice rapidly without damaging the asphalt, making it a great replacement for calcium chloride.

Furthermore, it can be used as a dyeing agent for printing or a bleaching agent for cotton lint in textile and fabric applications; In India and Brazil where the leather industry plays an important role, sodium formate is often used as a tanning agent for leather tanning.

Sodium formate is basic in aqueous solution of weak acid (formic acid) and strong base (sodium hydroxide). In chemical reactions, it can be used as a buffering agent to increase pH levels, a reducing agent for precious metals, a reagent for the determination of phosphorus and arsenic and as a mordant.

In exploratory drilling, high-density saturated sodium formate solution can enhance machines’ high-temperature resistance, prevent rust and exhibit microbial degradation functions. The use of sodium formate helps stabilize the rock layer and reduce the impact on the soil environment during oil explorations.

Recommendations and Precautionary Guidelines

For purer and a more stable sodium formate, it is recommended to select sodium formate made from natural gas-derived methanol. It is more environmentally friendly compared to production from carbon monoxide or petroleum-derived methanol. LCY’s sodium formate is made from natural gas-derived methanol, and has 97% purity, making it an excellent choice for a wide range of industrial applications.

Sodium formate is not harmful to the human body; however, it may cause irritation if it comes in contact with mucous membranes such as the eyes or the respiratory tract. Furthermore, industrial-grade sodium formate should not be used in food products.