ReactivityApplicationsSources and Extraction

Lithium is a rare aspect found mainly in molten rock and also saltwater in very tiny amounts. It is interpreted to be non-vital in human biological processes, although it is supplied in numerous drug treatments as result of its positive impacts on the person brain. Since of that reactive properties, humans have utilized lithium in batteries, nuclear blend reactions, and thermonuclear weapons.


Lithium was an initial identified together a component of of the mineral petalite and was discovered in 1817 by Johan respectable Arfwedson, yet not isolated till some time later on by W.T. Brande and Sir Humphry Davy. In its mineral creates it accounts for only 0.0007% of the earth"s crust. It compounds are provided in certain kinds of glass and also porcelain products. Much more recently lithium has become important in dry-cell batteries and nuclear reactors. Part compounds of lithium have been used to law manic depressives.

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Lithium is an alkali metal with the atomic number = 3 and also an atomic mass the 6.941 g/mol. This way that lithium has actually 3 protons, 3 electrons and also 4 neutron (6.941 - 3 = ~4). Gift an alkali metal, lithium is a soft, flammable, and highly reactive steel that has tendency to kind hydroxides. It additionally has a pretty short density and also under typical conditions, the is the least thick solid element.


Sources and Extraction

Lithium is most commonly found merged with aluminum, silicon, and also oxygen to kind the minerals well-known as spodumene (LiAl(SiO3)2) or petalite/castorite (LiAlSi4O10). These have actually been uncovered on each of the 6 inhabited continents, but they are mined mostly in west Australia, China, and Chile. Mineral sources of lithium are ending up being less essential, together methods have now been occurred to make use of the lithium salts found in saltwater.

Extraction indigenous minerals

The mineral develops of lithium space heated come a high sufficient temperature (1200 K - 1300 K) in order come crumble them and thus allow for subsequent reactions to an ext easily take place. ~ this process, among three methods can be applied.

The usage of sulfuric acid and also sodium carbonate to enable the iron and also aluminum to precipitate indigenous the ore - indigenous there, an ext sodium carbonate is used to the remaining material enable the lithium to precipitate out, creating lithium carbonate. This is treated with hydrochloric acid to form lithium chloride.The use of limestone come calcinate the ore, and then leaching v water, developing lithium hydroxide. Again, this is treated with hydrochloric mountain to form lithium chloride.The use of sulfuric acid, and also then leaching through water, forming lithium sulfate monohydrate. This is treated through sodium carbonate to form lithium carbonate, and then hydrochloric mountain to type lithium chloride.

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The lithium chloride acquired from any kind of of the three methods undergoes an oxidation-reduction reaction in an electrolytic cell, to separate the chloride ions from the lithium ions. The chloride ions are oxidized, and the lithium ions space reduced.

\<2Cl^- - 2e^- \rightarrow Cl_2 \;\; \text(oxidation)\>


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