Hydrogen chloride (HCl) is a colorless gas. Its aqueous solution is known as hydrochloric acid. Hydrogen chloride or hydrochloric acid is produced by burning hydrogen and chlorine together and is also a by-product of the chlorination of organic compounds.
Hydrochloric acid is a strong, inorganic acid used in almost all sectors of industry; e.g. in production of the plastic PVC, ferric chloride (needed for waste water purification) and steel industry. The concentration and the quality of HCl are the decisive factors for the type of application. It is one of the most important inorganic acids.
About 40 production processes generate HCl as a by-product (technical) and about 110 chemical manufacturing processes utilize hydrochloric acid as a raw material (technical and chemical pure).
Technical hydrochloric acid is used in a large number of applications. Major scope of application consists of metal pickling, ion-exchange regeneration, pH regulation and neutralization of process streams. Hydrogen chloride; as raw material; is also used for the production of numerous inorganic and organic compounds.
Chemical pure hydrochloric acid is mainly used in the pharmaceutical and food industry, for preparation of drinking water and as raw material for consumable products. These applications require a very high quality of hydrochloric acid.
Globally, most of the hydrochloric acid streams are “recycled” in captive consumption. The remaining volume enters the merchant market for applications in various industries.
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