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Aluminum Ammonium Sulphate

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Aluminum ammonium sulfate, also known as ammonium alum or just alum, is a chemical compound with the formula (NH4)Al(SO4)2·12H2O. It’s a white crystalline solid commonly used in water purification, leather tanning, and as a mordant in dyeing textiles.

In water purification, alum acts as a coagulant to remove impurities by causing suspended particles to clump together, making it easier for filtration to remove them. In leather tanning, it helps to stabilize the leather by tightening the collagen fibers. And in dyeing textiles, alum helps the dye adhere to the fabric.

However, it’s important to note that excessive exposure to aluminum compounds like alum can be harmful, so it’s typically used with caution and proper safety measures.

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Aluminum Ammonium Sulphate

In laboratory settings, aluminum ammonium sulfate (ammonium alum) has various uses:

  1. Crystal Growing: Ammonium alum crystals can be easily grown from a solution of the compound. These crystals are often used in educational settings to demonstrate crystallization processes or as a simple experiment for students to conduct.
  2. pH Buffer: Ammonium alum can act as a buffer solution, helping to stabilize the pH of certain solutions, particularly in educational or small-scale laboratory experiments.
  3. Protein Precipitation: It can be used for protein precipitation, particularly in the purification of proteins. Ammonium alum can help precipitate proteins out of solution, aiding in their isolation and purification.
  4. Electrophoresis: In some cases, aluminum ammonium sulfate can be used in electrophoresis applications, particularly in polyacrylamide gel electrophoresis (PAGE), where it can help to create a stable gel matrix.
  5. Dyeing and Staining: In histology and cytology laboratories, ammonium alum may be used as a mordant in staining procedures to help fix dyes to tissues or cells.
  6. Microscopy: Ammonium alum can be used as a mounting medium in microscopy to prepare slides for viewing under a microscope. It helps to preserve the specimen and provide clarity for observation.

 

SKU: ACS59687CHEM0 Category:

When working with aluminum ammonium sulfate (ammonium alum) in the laboratory, it’s important to observe certain safety precautions to minimize risks to health and ensure safe handling:

  1. Personal Protective Equipment (PPE): Wear appropriate PPE, including safety glasses or goggles, lab coat or apron, and gloves when handling aluminum ammonium sulfate to prevent contact with skin, eyes, and clothing.
  2. Ventilation: Work in a well-ventilated area or under a fume hood to minimize inhalation of dust or vapors. Avoid breathing in the dust or mist generated during handling.
  3. Handling and Storage: Handle aluminum ammonium sulfate with care to prevent spills or releases. Store it in a tightly sealed container in a cool, dry, and well-ventilated area away from incompatible substances.
  4. Avoid Ingestion: Do not eat, drink, or smoke while handling aluminum ammonium sulfate. Avoid ingestion of the compound as it may be harmful if swallowed.
  5. Avoid Skin and Eye Contact: Avoid skin and eye contact with aluminum ammonium sulfate. In case of contact, immediately rinse affected areas with plenty of water for at least 15 minutes and seek medical attention if irritation persists.
  6. Disposal: Dispose of aluminum ammonium sulfate according to local regulations and guidelines. Do not pour it down the drain unless it has been properly diluted and neutralized.
  7. Fire and Explosion Hazards: Aluminum ammonium sulfate is not combustible, but it may release toxic gases if involved in a fire. Keep it away from sources of ignition and incompatible substances to prevent fire or explosion hazards.
  8. First Aid: Familiarize yourself with the appropriate first aid measures in case of accidental exposure or ingestion. Have an emergency eyewash station and safety shower available in the laboratory.

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