Potassium Chlorate, Lab Grade, also known as Kaliumchlorat, occurs in pure form as a white crystalline material. When mixed with combustible materials, it can form a highly inflammable mixture due to its strong oxidizing properties. It forms a colorless highly dense aqueous solution with water at room temperature and can undergo ignition under prolonged exposure to heat or fire. It can irritate skin, eyes or mucous membranes upon exposure and requires safe handling. Lab grade chemicals possess reasonable purity but do not comply with any official standard for quality or purity. Our lab-grade Potassium Chlorate is recommended for educational institutes and research labs.
Potassium chlorate (KClO3) has been used to improve flowering during the normal crop cycle and to “induce” off-season flowering of longan trees in Thailand, Taiwan, other Southeast Asian countries, Florida and Hawaii. When heated it emits toxic fumes of chloride and potassium oxide. Read more here.
What Is Potassium Chlorate Used For?
Potassium chlorate is used in chemical oxygen generators (also called chlorate candles or oxygen candles), employed as oxygen-supply systems of e.g. aircraft, space stations, and submarines, and has been responsible for at least one plane crash. Read more here.
Information On Potassium Chloride From Wikipedia
- Potassium Chloride Molar Mass: 122.55 g/mol
- Potassium Chloride Formula: KClO3
- Potassium Chloride Melting Point: 672.8°F (356°C)
- Potassium Chloride Boiling Point: 752°F (400°C)
- Potassium Chloride Density: 2.34 g/cm³
- Potassium Chlorate ChemSpider ID: 18512
- Potassium Chlorate PubChem CID: 6426889
Potassium chlorate is a compound containing potassium, chlorine and oxygen, with the molecular formula KClO3. In its pure form, it is a white crystalline substance. It is the most common chlorate in industrial use. It is used,
- as an oxidizing agent,
- to prepare oxygen,
- as a disinfectant,
- in safety matches,
- in explosives and fireworks,
- in cultivation, forcing the blossoming stage of the longan tree, causing it to produce fruit in warmer climates.
Potassium chlorate was one key ingredient in early firearms percussion caps (primers). It continues in that application, where not supplanted by potassium perchlorate.
Chlorate-based propellants are more efficient than traditional gunpowder and are less susceptible to damage by water. However, they can be extremely unstable in the presence of sulfur or phosphorus and are much more expensive. Chlorate propellants must be used only in equipment designed for them; failure to follow this precaution is a common source of accidents. Potassium chlorate, often in combination with silver fulminate, is used in trick noise-makers known as "crackers", "snappers", "pop-its", or "bang-snaps", a popular type of novelty firework.
Another application of potassium chlorate is as the oxidizer in a smoke composition such as that used in smoke grenades. Since 2005, a cartridge with potassium chlorate mixed with lactose and rosin is used for generating the white smoke signaling the election of new pope by a papal conclave.
Potassium chlorate is often used in high school and college laboratories to generate oxygen gas. It is a far cheaper source than a pressurized or cryogenic oxygen tank. Potassium chlorate readily decomposes if heated while in contact with a catalyst, typically manganese(IV) dioxide (MnO2). Thus, it may be simply placed in a test tube and heated over a burner. If the test tube is equipped with a one-holed stopper and hose, warm oxygen can be drawn off. The reaction is as follows:
2 KClO3(s) → 3 O2(g) + 2 KCl(s)
Heating it in the absence of a catalyst converts it into potassium perchlorate:
4 KClO3 → 3 KClO4 + KCl
With further heating, potassium perchlorate decomposes to potassium chloride and oxygen:
KClO4 → KCl + 2 O2
The safe performance of this reaction requires very pure reagents and careful temperature control. Molten potassium chlorate is an extremely powerful oxidizer and spontaneously reacts with many common materials such as sugar. Explosions have resulted from liquid chlorates spattering into the latex or PVC tubes of oxygen generators, as well as from contact between chlorates and hydrocarbon sealing greases. Impurities in potassium chlorate itself can also cause problems. When working with a new batch of potassium chlorate, it is advisable to take a small sample (~1 gram) and heat it strongly on an open glass plate. Contamination may cause this small quantity to explode, indicating that the chlorate should be discarded.
Potassium chlorate is used in chemical oxygen generators (also called chlorate candles or oxygen candles), employed as oxygen-supply systems of e.g. aircraft, space stations, and submarines, and has been responsible for at least one plane crash. A fire on the space station Mir was also traced to this substance. The decomposition of potassium chlorate was also used to provide the oxygen supply for limelights.
Potassium chlorate is used also as a pesticide. In Finland it was sold under trade name Fegabit.
Potassium chlorate can react with sulfuric acid to form a highly reactive solution of chloric acid and potassium sulfate:
2 KClO3 + H2SO4 → 2 HClO3 + K2SO4
The solution so produced is sufficiently reactive that it spontaneously ignites if combustible material (sugar, paper, etc.) is present.
In schools, molten potassium chlorate is used in the dramatic screaming jelly babies, Gummy bear, Haribo, and Trolli candy demonstration where the candy is dropped into the molten salt.
In chemical labs it is used to oxidize HCl and release small amounts of gaseous chlorine.
Insurgents in Afghanistan also use potassium chlorate extensively as a key component in the production of improvised explosive devices. When significant effort was made to reduce the availability of ammonium nitrate fertilizer in Afghanistan, IED makers started using potassium chlorate as a cheap and effective alternative. In 2013, 60% of IEDs in Afghanistan used potassium chlorate, making it the most common ingredient used in IEDs. Potassium Chlorate was also the main ingredient in the car bomb used in 2002 Bali bombings that killed 202 people.
Information On Potassium Chloride From PubChem
Potassium chlorate appears as a white crystalline solid. Forms a very flammable mixture with combustible materials. Mixture may be explosive if combustible material is very finely divided. Mixture may be ignited by friction. Contact with strong sulfuric acid may cause fires or explosions. May spontaneously decompose and ignite when mixed with ammonium salts. May explode under prolonged exposure to heat or fire. Used to make matches, paper, explosives, and many other uses.
Potassium chlorate, aqueous solution appears as a colorless liquid. Denser than water. Contact may irritate skin, eyes and mucous membranes. May be toxic by ingestion. Used to make other chemicals. Ignites organic materials upon contact. Read more here.
Potassium Chlorate for Longan Trees | Home Guides | SF Gate
The longan (Dimocarpus longan), native to subtropical regions of Southeast Asia, produces a fruit similar to the lychee. In some years, unexpected periods of winter warmth and leaf growth suppress flowering and the subsequent yield of fruit. Growers in Southeastern Asia and Florida spray potassium chlorate on dormant trees to improve flowering and to induce off-season flowering. Longans may be grown in U.S. Department of Agriculture plant hardiness zones 9B through 11. Read more here.
Potassium Chlorate, Lab Grade Features:
|Sulfate (SO4)||5 ppm|
|Heavy Metals (as Pb)||5 ppm|
|Iron (Fe)||3 ppm|
- Oxidizing agent
- Chemical process industries
- Manufacturing of explosives/fireworks
- Textile printing
Potassium Chlorate Shipping Information:
DOT: Potassium chlorate, 5.1, UN1485, PG II
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Specifications and SDS
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