Na2CO3 - Sodium Carbonate

What is Sodium Carbonate?

Na2CO3 is a diazonium salt of carbonic acid. It is also known as Soda crystals, soda ash, washing soda. This inorganic compound is water soluble and when dissolved in water, it forms carbonic acid and sodium hydroxide. In its pure form it is white powder and odorless. It is a strong base and acts as an antacid. Sodium carbonate can be produced by four processes – Solvay process, Labnac process, Dual process, Electrolytic process. Since it is a weak acid it is slightly soluble in ethanol and insoluble in alcohol. One of the important uses of Na2CO3 is as a water softener. PH is about 10.52

Properties of Sodium Carbonate – Na2CO3


Sodium Carbonate

Molecular Weight/ Molar Mass

105.9888 g/mol


2.54 g/cm³

Boiling Point

1,600 °C

Melting Point

851 °C

Sodium Carbonate structure – Na2CO3


Uses of Sodium Carbonate (Na2CO3)

  • It is used in the manufacture of detergents, soaps, paper
  • It is used in as a wetting agent in brick industry
  • It is used as abrasive and foaming agent in toothpaste
  • It is used as a PH modifier
  • It is used as water softener –  Hard water which consists of magnesium and calcium ions are precipitated by carbonate

Learn more about the chemical behavior and importance of Na2CO3 with the expert faculties at BYJU’S.

Practise This Question

Fractional distillation is the separation of a mixture into its component parts or fractions. This is the process of separation of chemical compounds due to difference in their boiling point. The mixture is heated to a temperature at which one or more fractions (component parts) will vaporize. It is a special type of distillation.

Air is a homogeneous mixture of 78.09% nitrogen, 20.95% oxygen, 0.93% argon, 0.039% carbon dioxide, and small amounts of other gases such as helium, krypton, nitrogen dioxide etc.

Consider three gases oxygen, nitrogen and argon whose boiling points are -183, -196, -186 degree celsius, they are to be separated from air using fractional distillation.

Air is compressed by increasing the pressure and then cooled by decreasing the temperature in order to get liquid air. This liquid air is allowed to warm-up slowly in a fractional distillation column, where gases get separated at different heights depending upon their boiling points. As the height of tower increases the temperature increases.

Statement: The temperature is ____ at the base of the fractional distillation column.