Hazards of Copper Sulfate

Copper sulfate has many industrial applications.
••• glass beakers image by Mark Aplet from Fotolia.com

Copper sulfate is an ionic compound composed of copper, sulfur, and oxygen. It is a widely used, very versatile molecule. The fiber industry uses it for creating synthetic fibers. In the metal industry copper sulfate is used in copper refining. It is also utilized in the mining industry, as well as in the printing and paint making industries.

Reactivity Hazards

Copper sulfate may burn, but it will not ignite. There is no concern of it exploding, and if extinguishing is needed, dry carbon dioxide is the method of choice. Copper sulfate is stable at normal temperatures. When mixed with an acid, copper sulfate will dissolve; however, no products formed will be hazardous.

Health Hazards

Some people may exhibit a sensitivity to copper if copper sulfate makes contact with their skin. Copper sulfate is a severe eye irritant and can cause substantial damage to the eyes. If inhaled, the dust can cause respiratory irritation. Copper sulfate should not be ingested. Doing so will cause serious diarrhea and vomiting. Copper sulfate is not a known carcinogen.

Environmental Hazards

Copper sulfate is toxic to fish and plants, so it is important to control spills and leaks. Copper sulfate is most easily contained when dry, but liquid spills can be pumped into waste containers and disposed of. Copper sulfate containers should not be reused, and all materials should be disposed of according to local, state, and federal legislation.

Related Articles

Copper Sulfate Alternatives
Signs of a Chemical Reaction With Steel Wool and Peroxide
Physical and Chemical Properties for the Element Aluminum
Uses of PVC Plastic
Physical Properties of Urea
Uses for Gypsum Powder
Copper Sulfate Alternatives
The Effects of Oxidation on Copper
Examples of Secondary Pollutants
Effects of Chlorine Inhalation
How to Make Sodium Nitrate
Why Is Smog Bad?
Uses of Potassium Hydroxide
Uses of Zinc Carbonate
What Is Zinc Powder?
Transition Metals & Their Uses
Is Recycling Copper Good for the Environment?
Alternative Solvents to Benzene
What Is the Chemical MDI?
How to Remove Bee Propolis Stains