Citric Acid – A Green Chemical

Environmental issues have been important concerns over the past decades .One fail-safe way to counteract the undesirable impacts of such issues is to substitute green chemicals for the hazardous chemical compounds .Although there are a couple of acids as green chemical compounds ,Citric Acid is definitely a compound which is on the top of the list . Fruit and vegetables ,namely citrus fruit , contain this acid .Its chemical formula is C6H8O7. Here we are going to describe some of the most significant applications of Citric Acid as a green chemical.

Citric Acid as a green wood adhesive:

Wood industries have been widely using non- renewable petrochemicals for wood modification. Citric acid, however, has the potential to be developed as a natural binder. The hypothesis is that this acid causes the esterification of hydroxyl groups in wood. In fact, the reaction between carboxyl groups of Citric acid and those of wood forms ester cross-links . These linkages bring about good bonding properties and adhesivity. For more information click here.

Citric Acid as a green detergent:

Another significant application of CA is in household disinfectants . With the increasing negative effects of phosphates, as the main component of cleaners , their use has been banned in some countries. This has given rise to the substitution of CA for harmful chemicals. Since we only need to disinfect in certain circumstances, as over-disinfecting is dangerous as well, citric acid -based cleaners are one of the best alternatives to avoid the dangers of household chemicals .

Citric Acid as a Steel protector :

Recently , chemists are turning their attention to using Ca to protect steel .For many years industries have been using Nitric Acid, due to its passivating properties to protect stainless steel from corrosion. As we know this acid is hazardous because of the toxic fumes it generates and highly acidic nature. It seems that CA is a potential replacement as its production involves natural sources. Also ,its acidic properties are weaker although it is effective. Moreover, this natural acid doesn’t generate toxic fumes or hazardous waste. Based on extensive laboratory tests ,acetic acid has shown equal or even performance in corrosion resistance for stainless steel passivation compared with other chemicals.