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Calcium chloride

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Title: Calcium chloride  
Author: World Heritage Encyclopedia
Language: English
Subject: Calcium, Calcium hypochlorite, Magnesium chloride, Calcium chlorate, Dicalcium phosphate
Collection: Calcium Compounds, Chlorides, Deliquescent Substances, Desiccants, Edible Salt, Metal Halides, Pyrotechnic Colorants
Publisher: World Heritage Encyclopedia

Calcium chloride

Calcium chloride
Structure of calcium chloride, (chlorine is green, calcium is gray)
Sample of calcium chloride
IUPAC name
Calcium chloride
Other names
Calcium(II) chloride, Calcium dichloride, E509
(monohydrate) N
(dihydrate) N
(tetrahydrate) N
(hexahydrate) N
ATC code A12
B05, G04
ChemSpider  Y
DrugBank  Y
EC number 233-140-8
Jmol-3D images Image
RTECS number EV9800000
Molar mass 110.98 g·mol−1
Appearance White powder, hygroscopic
Odor Odorless
Density 2.15 g/cm3 (anhydrous)
2.24 g/cm3 (monohydrate)
1.85 g/cm3 (dihydrate)
1.83 g/cm3 (tetrahydrate)
1.71 g/cm3 (hexahydrate)[1]
Melting point 772–775 °C (1,422–1,427 °F; 1,045–1,048 K)
260 °C (500 °F; 533 K)
monohydrate, decomposes
175 °C (347 °F; 448 K)
dihydrate, decomposes
45.5 °C (113.9 °F; 318.7 K)
tetrahydrate, decomposes[2]
30 °C (86 °F; 303 K)
hexahydrate, decomposes[1]
Boiling point 1,935 °C (3,515 °F; 2,208 K) anhydrous[1]
74.5 g/100 mL (20 °C)[3]
49.4 g/100 mL (−25 °C)
59.5 g/100 mL (0 °C)
65 g/100 mL (10 °C)
81.1 g/100 mL (25 °C)[1]
102.2 g/100 mL (30.2 °C)
90.8 g/100 mL (20 °C)
114.4 g/100 mL (40 °C)
134.5 g/100 mL (60 °C)
152.4 g/100 mL (100 °C)[4]
Solubility Soluble in CH3COOH, alcohols
Insoluble in liquid NH3, DMSO, CH3COOC2H5[5]
Solubility in ethanol 18.3 g/100 g (0 °C)
25.8 g/100 g (20 °C)
35.3 g/100 g (40 °C)
56.2 g/100 g (70 °C)[5]
Solubility in methanol 21.8 g/100 g (0 °C)
29.2 g/100 g (20 °C)
38.5 g/100 g (40 °C)[5]
Solubility in acetone 0.1 g/kg (20 °C)[5]
Solubility in pyridine 16.6 g/kg[5]
Acidity (pKa) 8–9 (anhydrous)
6.5–8.0 (hexahydrate)
−5.47·10−5 cm3/mol[1]
Viscosity 3.34 cP (787 °C)
1.44 cP (967 °C)[5]
Orthorhombic (rutile, anhydrous), oP6
Tetragonal (anhydrous, > 217 °C), oP6[6]
Trigonal (hexahydrate)
Pnnm, No. 58 (anhydrous)
P42/mnm, No. 136 (anhydrous, > 217 °C)[6]
2/m 2/m 2/m (anhydrous)
4/m 2/m 2/m (anhydrous, > 217 °C)[6]
a = 6.259 Å, b = 6.444 Å, c = 4.17 Å (anhydrous, 17 °C)[6]
α = 90°, β = 90°, γ = 90°
Octahedral (Ca2+, anhydrous)
72.89 J/mol·K (anhydrous)[1]
106.23 J/mol·K (monohydrate)
172.92 J/mol·K (dihydrate)
251.17 J/mol·K (tetrahydrate)
300.7 J/mol·K (hexahydrate)[2]
108.4 J/mol·K[1][2]
−795.42 kJ/mol (anhydrous)[1]
−1110.98 kJ/mol (monohydrate)
−1403.98 kJ/mol (dihydrate)
−2009.99 kJ/mol (tetrahydrate)
− 2608.01 kJ/mol (hexahydrate)[2]
−748.81 kJ/mol[1][2]
Safety data sheet See: data page
GHS pictograms The exclamation-mark pictogram in the Globally Harmonized System of Classification and Labelling of Chemicals (GHS)[7]
GHS signal word Warning
Irritant Xi
R-phrases R36
S-phrases S22, S24
NFPA 704
Lethal dose or concentration (LD, LC):
LD50 (Median dose)
1000 mg/kg (rats, oral)[8]
Related compounds
Other anions
Calcium fluoride
Calcium bromide
Calcium iodide
Other cations
Beryllium chloride
Magnesium chloride
Strontium chloride
Barium chloride
Radium chloride
Supplementary data page
Refractive index (n),
Dielectric constantr), etc.
Phase behaviour
Except where otherwise noted, data are given for materials in their standard state (at 25 °C [77 °F], 100 kPa).
 N  (: Y/N?)

Calcium chloride (chemical formula CaCl2) is the ionic compound of calcium and chlorine. It is a salt that behaves as a typical ionic halide, being solid at room temperature and highly soluble in water. Common applications include brine for refrigeration plants, ice and dust control on roads, and desiccation. Because of its hygroscopic nature, attracting and holding water, anhydrous calcium chloride must be kept in airtight containers.


  • Properties 1
  • Preparation 2
  • Occurrence 3
  • Uses 4
    • Desiccant 4.1
    • Road surfacing 4.2
    • Deicing and freezing point depression 4.3
    • Swimming pools and aquariums 4.4
    • Food 4.5
    • Medicine 4.6
    • Animal sterilization 4.7
    • Other 4.8
  • Hazards 5
  • See also 6
  • References 7
  • External links 8


Flame test of CaCl2.

Calcium chloride can serve as a source of calcium ions in an aqueous solution, as calcium chloride is soluble in water. This property can be useful for displacing ions from solution. For example, phosphate is displaced from solution by calcium:

3 CaCl2(aq) + 2 K3PO4(aq) → Ca3(PO4)2(s) + 6 KCl(aq)

Molten calcium chloride can be electrolysed to give calcium metal and chlorine gas:

CaCl2(l) → Ca(s) + Cl2(g)

Calcium chloride has a very high enthalpy change of solution. A considerable temperature rise accompanies its dissolution in water.

The anhydrous salt is deliquescent; it can accumulate enough water in its crystal lattice to form a solution.


Calcium chloride can be produced directly from limestone, but large amounts are also produced as a by-product of the Solvay process. North American consumption in 2002 was 1,687,000 tons (3.7 billion pounds).[9] A Dow Chemical Company manufacturing facility in Michigan houses about 35% of the total U.S. production capacity for calcium chloride.[10]


Calcium chloride occurs as the rare evaporite minerals sinjarite (dihydrate) and antarcticite (hexahydrate). A related mineral chlorocalcite (potassium calcium chloride, KCaCl3) is also very rare.



Drying tubes are frequently packed with calcium chloride. Kelp is dried with calcium chloride for use in producing sodium carbonate. Anhydrous calcium chloride has been approved by the FDA as a packaging aid to ensure dryness (CPG 7117.02).[11]

Also used in salt/chemical-based dehumidifiers in domestic and other environments to adsorb dampness/moisture from the air.[12]

Road surfacing

Calcium chloride was sprayed on this road to prevent weathering, giving it a wet appearance even in dry weather.

These hygroscopic properties are also applied to keep a liquid layer on the surface of dirt roads, which holds dust down. This keeps the finer dust particles on the road, providing a cushioning layer. If these are allowed to blow away, the larger aggregate begins to shift around and the road breaks down. Using calcium chloride reduces the need for grading by as much as 50% and the need for fill-in materials as much as 80%[13]

Deicing and freezing point depression

Bulk of CaCl2 for deicing in Japan.

By depressing the freezing point of water, calcium chloride is used to prevent ice formation and to deice. This is particularly useful on road surfaces. Calcium chloride dissolution is exothermic, and the compound is relatively harmless to plants and soil; however, recent observations in Washington state suggest it may be particularly harsh on roadside evergreen trees.[14] It is also more effective at lower temperatures than sodium chloride. When distributed for this use, it usually takes the form of small, white balls a few millimeters in diameter, called prills. Solutions of calcium chloride can prevent freezing at temperature as low as −52 °C (−62 °F), making it ideal for filling agricultural implement tires as a liquid ballast, aiding traction in cold climates.[15]

Swimming pools and aquariums

Calcium chloride is used to increase the water hardness in swimming pools. This reduces the erosion of the concrete in the pool. By Le Chatelier's principle and the common ion effect, increasing the concentration of calcium in the water will reduce the dissolution of calcium compounds essential to the structure of concrete.

In marine aquariums, calcium chloride is added to introduce bioavailable calcium for calcium carbonate-shelled animals such as mollusks and some cnidarians. Calcium hydroxide (kalkwasser mix) or a calcium reactor can also be used to introduce calcium; however, calcium chloride addition is the fastest method and has minimal impact on pH.


As an ingredient, it is listed as a permitted food additive in the

  • International Chemical Safety Card 1184
  • Product and Application Information (Formerly Dow Chemical Calcium Chloride division)
  • 2Report on steel corrosion by chloride including CaCl
  • Collection of calcium chloride reports and articles
  • Calcium chloride, Anhydrous MSDS

External links

  1. ^ a b c d e f g h i Lide, David R., ed. (2009).  
  2. ^ a b c d e f Pradyot, Patnaik (2003). Handbook of Inorganic Chemicals. The McGraw-Hill Companies, Inc. p. 162.  
  3. ^ "CALCIUM CHLORIDE (ANHYDROUS)". ICSC. International Programme on Chemical Safety and the European Commission. 
  4. ^ Seidell, Atherton; Linke, William F. (1919). Solubilities of Inorganic and Organic Compounds (2nd ed.). New York: D. Van Nostrand Company. p. 196. 
  5. ^ a b c d e f Anatolievich, Kiper Ruslan. "Properties of substance: calcium chloride". Retrieved 2014-07-07. 
  6. ^ a b c d Müller, Ulrich (2006). Inorganic Structural Chemistry. (2nd ed.) (England: John Wiley & Sons Ltd.). p. 33.  
  7. ^ a b c Sigma-Aldrich Co., Calcium chloride. Retrieved on 2014-07-07.
  8. ^ a b "MSDS of Calcium chloride". Fisher Scientific. Retrieved 2014-07-07. 
  9. ^ Calcium Chloride SIDS Initial Assessment Profile, UNEP Publications, SIAM 15, Boston, 22–25 October 2002, page 11.
  10. ^ Calcium Chloride Chemical Profile, The Innovation Group,, printed 9 September 2005.
  11. ^ "CPG 7117.02". FDA Compliance Articles. US Food and Drug Administration. March 1995. Retrieved 3 December 2007. 
  12. ^ " Keeping Things Dry". Retrieved 2014-10-23. 
  13. ^ "Dust: Don't Eat It! Control It!". Road Management & Engineering Journal. US Roads (TranSafety Inc.). 1 June 1998. Retrieved 9 August 2006. 
  14. ^ "De-icer damaging thousands of trees on mountain passes". The Seattle Times. 19 March 2008. Retrieved 18 March 2008. 
  15. ^ "Agricultural Tire Hydroinflation". Firestone Tires. December 2007. Retrieved 3 December 2007. 
  16. ^ 21 CFR § 184.1193
  17. ^ 7 CFR § 205.602
  18. ^ Calcium Chloride SIDS Initial Assessment Profile, UNEP Publications, SIAM 15, Boston, 22–25 October 2002, pp. 13–14.
  19. ^ "Apple Caviar Technique". StarChefs Studio. April 2004. Retrieved 9 August 2006. 
  20. ^ "Calcium chloride Prescribing Information". Hospira, Inc. November 2009. Retrieved 10 June 2011. 
  21. ^ Koger, Nov 1977, "Calcium Chloride, Practical Necrotizing Agent", Journal of the American Association of Bovine Practitioners (USA), (Nov 1977), v. 12, p. 118–119
  22. ^ Jana, K.; Samanta, P.K. (2011). "Clinical evaluation of non-surgical sterilization of male cats with single intra-testicular injection of calcium chloride". BMC Vet Res. 7: 39.  
  23. ^ "Accelerating Concrete Set Time".  
  24. ^ National Research Council (U.S.). Building Research Institute (1962). Adhesives in Building: Selection and Field Application; Pressure-sensitive Tapes. National Academy of Science-National Research Council. pp. 24–5. 
  25. ^ "Product Safety Assessment (PSA): Calcium Chloride".  
  26. ^ "Calcium Chloride Possible Side Affects". 


See also

Calcium chloride salts also tend to contain a small amount of metals, especially aluminium. Over time these metals can accumulate in the body and have a toxic effect.

Any of these may be a sign of overly high calcium blood levels (hypercalcemia).[26]

  • A chalky taste in the mouth
  • Hot flashes
  • Lowered blood pressure
  • Loss of appetite
  • Feeling sick (nausea)
  • Being sick (vomiting)
  • Constipation
  • Stomach pain
  • Feeling weak
  • Mental disturbances
  • Extreme thirst
  • Passing a large amount of urine
  • Bone pain
  • Kidney stones
  • Irregular heart beat
  • Coma

Other possible side effects of taking calcium chloride include:

Calcium chloride can act as an irritant by desiccating moist skin. Solid calcium chloride dissolves exothermically, and burns can result in the mouth and esophagus if it is ingested. Ingestion of concentrated solutions or solid products may cause gastrointestinal irritation or ulceration.[25]


Calcium chloride is also an ingredient used in ceramic slipware. It suspends clay particles so that they float within the solution making it easier to use in a variety of slipcasting techniques.

CaCl2 acts as flux material (decreasing melting point) in the Davy process for the industrial production of sodium metal, through the electrolysis of molten NaCl.

In the oil industry, calcium chloride is used to increase the density of solids-free brines. It is also used to provide inhibition of swelling clays in the water phase of invert emulsion drilling fluids.

The exothermic dissolution of calcium chloride is used in self-heating cans and heating pads.

Calcium chloride is included as an additive in plastics and in fire extinguishers, in wastewater treatment as a drainage aid, in blast furnaces as an additive to control scaffolding (clumping and adhesion of materials that prevent the furnace charge from descending), and in fabric softener as a thinner.

Calcium chloride is used in swimming pool water as a pH buffer and to adjust the calcium hardness of the water.

Calcium chloride is used in concrete mixes to help speed up the initial setting, but chloride ions lead to corrosion of steel rebar, so it should not be used in reinforced concrete.[23] The anhydrous form of calcium chloride may also be used for this purpose and can provide a measure of the moisture in concrete.[24]


Calcium chloride dihydrate (20% by weight) dissolved in ethanol (95% ABV) has been used as a sterilant for male animals. The non surgical procedure consists of the injection of the solution into the testes of the animal. Within 1 month, necrosis of testicular tissue results in sterilization.[21][22]

Animal sterilization

Aqueous calcium chloride is used in genetic transformation of cells by increasing the cell membrane permeability, inducing competence for DNA uptake (allowing DNA fragments to enter the cell more readily).

It is injected to treat internal hydrofluoric acid burns. It can be used to treat magnesium intoxication. Calcium chloride injection may antagonize cardiac toxicity as measured by electrocardiogram. It can help to protect the myocardium from dangerously high levels of serum potassium in hyperkalemia. Calcium chloride can be used to quickly treat calcium channel blocker toxicity, from the side effects of drugs such as diltiazem (Cardizem) — helping avoid potential heart attacks.[20]


In cheesemaking, calcium chloride is sometimes added to processed (pasteurized/homogenized) milk to restore the natural balance between calcium and protein in casein for the purposes of making cheeses, such as brie, Pélardon and Stilton. By adding calcium chloride to the milk before adding the coagulant, calcium levels are restored. Also, it is frequently added to sliced apples to maintain texture.

In brewing beer, calcium chloride is sometimes used to correct mineral deficiencies in the brewing water. It affects flavor and chemical reactions during the brewing process, and can also affect yeast function during fermentation.

As a firming agent, calcium chloride is used in canned vegetables, in firming soybean curds into tofu and in producing a caviar substitute from vegetable or fruit juices.[19] It is commonly used as an electrolyte in sports drinks and other beverages, including bottled water. The extremely salty taste of calcium chloride is used to flavor pickles while not increasing the food's sodium content. Calcium chloride's freezing-point depression properties are used to slow the freezing of the caramel in caramel-filled chocolate bars.

[18] The average intake of calcium chloride as food additives has been estimated to be 160–345 mg/day for individuals.[17]

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