Sulphuric Acid

Contact Process
Sulphuric Acid is manufactured through the contact process. This is a flow chart to show the steps in the production of sulphuric acid by the Contact Process, starting from the raw materials until you finally get the sulphuric acid.

Sulphur Dioxide
This is one of the by-products of the Contact Process. It causes environment pollution. But before that, let us see the  main sources of sulphur dioxide.
Now that we know the sources of sulphur dioxide, let us see the effects of sulphur dioxide towards human health.

  • Severe airways obstruction, 
  • Hypoxemia (insufficient oxygenation of the blood), 
  • Pulmonary edema (a life threatening accumulation of fluid in the lungs)
  • Skin irritation
  • Eye irritation
  • Smarting of the eyes and lachrymation (tears)
  • Permanent pulmonary impairment (prolonged exposure)
  • may cause Cancers such as lung cancer, stomach cancer or brain tumours

Acid Rain

Acid rain has a pH below 5.6 due mainly to the reaction of water vapour with sulfur dioxide and the oxides of nitrogen.

    • Sulfur dioxide reacts with water to form sulfurous acid (H2SO3):SO2(g) + H2O(l)  H2SO3(aq)
    • Sulfur dioxide (SO2) can be oxidised gradually to sulfur trioxide (SO3):2SO2(g) + O2(g) —–> 2SO3(g)
    • Sulfur trioxide (SO3) reacts with water to form sulfuric acid (H2SO4):

SO3(g) + H2O(l) —–> H2SO4(aq)

Effects of Acid Rain


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