The Various Types of Water Solutions Being Used in Industries and Chemical Laboratories

There are different kinds of water solutions used intensively in industries and chemical labs today and many companies are providing them for other companies who need them. It so happens that each type of solution may vary in concentration and strength and different industries may demand for different types of such mixtures. Thus, it may be imperative to communicate with your supplier to discuss your specific needs. These chemical solutions would range from reagents in aqueous solutions to indicator solutions, each of which has different uses and different properties.

Perhaps one of the most widely used chemical solutions is buffer solutions. At the same time, they are the most naturally occurring solutions in nature. Did you know that seawater and blood are some of the best examples? Buffers are actually mixtures of a weak acid and its salt or a weak alkaline and its salt. An example is the mixture of acetic acid and sodium acetate. Buffer solutions are vitally important in controlling the pH range of the system where they are present. This pH control is important in many industrial applications that include manufacture of chemicals. In processes involving biochemical reactions, a limited pH range keeps such reactions at normal pace, whereas too much acidity or alkalinity could slow down or stop chemical reactions. Thus, buffer solutions are important in fermentation process and in pH measurement.

Another kind of water solution is indicator solution, also known as acid-base indicators. These are actually solutions of weak acid or weak base and are used to determine whether a solution is alkaline or acid. However, most indicators work only within a particular range of pH. The common indicator solutions include thymol blue, methyl orange, bromthymol blue, phenolphthalein, and bromphenol blue. These solutions are basically used in analytical chemistry when titrations are needed, during which a color change can indicate the alkalinity or acidity.

Standard solutions are another type of laboratory solutions used in titrations. The importance of these solutions comes from their determined concentration which is basically ideal in appropriate measurements of the presence of a substance or solute in a solution. Standard solutions are expressed in their normality or molarity. Substances used include acids like acetic acid, sulfuric acid and hydrochloric acid in aqueous solution; bases like potassium hydroxide and sodium hydroxide; and salts like potassium chloride, calcium chloride, and ammonium sulfate. Since the standard solution has a known amount of a substance, this can be used to determine the precise amount of another substance during chemical analysis. For example, if you have a solution of sodium hydroxide whose concentration you need to determine, a standard solution of hydrochloric acid may be used. By computing the amount of HCI needed to neutralize the solution, the amount of NaOH will then be calculated.

Aqueous solutions may also include percentage solutions, which are more comprehensible to people with little knowledge in chemistry than molar solutions. A percentage solution may refer to the proportion of the mass of solute to the mass of solvent. Nevertheless, there may be differences. For instance, percentage may mean volume to volume ratio or, in some cases, mass to volume ratio. However, the use of volume may not yield accurate measurements in thermodynamics, since volume changes with temperature and pressure. In any case, percentage solutions are used to determine the amount of solute present in the solution. This is relevant during chemical analyses and computations.

There are also conductivity standard solutions manufactured by water companies for their own use or for other companies’ utilization. Conductivity standards are important in testing pure water quality, which involves a test to determine the electric conductivity of water. Such conductivity standard solutions contain potassium chloride (KCI). Since the aim of any analytical measurement is accuracy, standardized solutions are deemed necessary in preparation and testing of chemicals.

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