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chromium 4 oxide, also known as chromic oxide or CrO2, is an insoluble thermally stable source of Chromium. It is used as a pigment in glass, optic and ceramic applications. It is also a selective oxidant for simple alcohols and hydrocarbons used in some magnetic data storage tapes. It is a non-conductive oxide, but certain perovskite structured compounds are electronically conductive.

The chemically stable ionic species, chromate, CrO42- and dichromate, Cr2O72- are the basis for a series of industrially important salts such as sodium chromate, NaCrO4, and sodium dichromate, Na2CrO4. In solution, Chromium(VI) is toxic by inhalation (Hamilton and Wetterhahn, 1988).

Inhalation of hexavalent chromium aerosols causes lung irritation with a high incidence of perforation of the nasal septum and skin ulcers, and it damages liver and kidneys (Gomes, 1972). Hexavalent chromium may also cause dermatitis in humans. Symptoms of toxicity vary, but include nausea, vomiting, diarrhea, headache, anorexia, fatigue, muscle weakness and a loss of appetite. Blood chromium levels peak at the end of exposure and decline slowly afterward.

Traditional chromite plant production produces large amounts of hexavalent chromium residues, dusts and waste gases, which pollute groundwater, rivers and marine areas. Pilot-plant tests show that the use of a less calcium [5] roasting technology allows for a significantly lower concentration of hexavalent chromium discharge, and that a novel process without any hexavalent chromate residue is possible. This could lead to a new environmentally friendly, efficient manufacturing method. The authors gratefully acknowledge the financial support from National Natural Science Foundation of China (Grant No. 50234040).

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