Definition - What does Potassium Chloride mean?
Potassium chloride is an inorganic metal halide composed of a potassium ion and a chloride ion with the chemical formula KCl. It is a odorless white crystal or crystalline powder. As a solid, KCl dissolves promptly in water and its solutions have a salt-like taste.
Potassium chloride is used in buffers, fertilizers, medicine, scientific applications, food processing and explosives. Potassium chloride is also used as a flux for the gas welding of aluminum along with sodium chloride and lithium chloride.
Corrosionpedia explains Potassium Chloride
Potassium chloride (KCl) is a chemical compound containing potassium and chloride. It is soluble in various polar solvents. It is fully ionized into solvated K + and Cl + ions in aqueous solution. Potassium metal can be produced from potassium chloride by reacting it with metallic sodium at 850 °C (1562 °F). Here more volatile potassium can be removed by distillation:
KCl(l) + Na(l) --> NaCl(l) + K(g)
Large quantities of potassium chloride are produced from mined potash ores and from salt-containing surface water. More than 90% of the produced potassium chloride is consumed as fertilizer, either directly or after converting to potassium sulfate. The remaining potassium chloride is used as the raw material for manufacturing potassium and its compounds in industries.
KCl has various uses, such as:
- Agricultural chemicals (non-pesticidal)
- Laboratory chemicals
- Plating agents and surface treating agents
- Processing aids, specific to petroleum production
- Electrical and electronic products
- Metal products
- Paints and coatings
- Water treatment products
Potassium chloride is used as an electrolyte in calomel electrode and saturated calomel electrode as well as disbondment tests in corrosion protection.