A common mineral is gypsum. Calcium sulphate (CaSO4) and water (H2O) are made up of gypsum. Calcium sulphate dihydrate (CaSO4.2H2O) is its chemical name. There are no long-term adverse safety effects of gypsum consumption. In case you swallow it, brush your teeth and drink plenty of water. Plaster powders can irritate the respiratory system or make the eyes or fragile skin irritated. Gypsum can cause skin, eyes, mucous membranes and upper respiratory system irritation.
Gypsum is chemically neutral and not strongly alkaline like cement mortar or concrete, and therefore does not protect steel or iron from rusting. In sedimentary settings, gypsum is one of the more natural minerals. It is a major mineral forming rock that creates vast beds, primarily from extremely salty waters from precipitation. Gypsum powder is used mostly in construction materials such as drywall, but it is also useful as a soil fertiliser and conditioner in agriculture. To improve the texture of ingredients in cooked foods, gypsum may also be used as a food additive.
A total of nearly 1.5 million tons of gypsum, including mined gypsum and byproduct gypsum, were used in agriculture in 1994. Farmers with some typical agricultural problems are supported by improving soil structure. By applying gypsum to the soil, erosion is minimised by increasing the soil’s ability to suck up water following precipitation, thus decreasing runoff. Gypsum application across the soil profile often promotes soil aeration and water percolation.
Gypsum occurs in lagoons where ocean waters rich in calcium and sulphate content are able to steadily evaporate and replenish with fresh water supplies on a daily basis. The effect is the deposition of large sedimentary gypsum deposits. Rock salt and sulphur deposits are generally associated with gypsum.