Caustic Potash (all grades)

CAS:   1310-58-3

Synonyms:    Caustic Potash, Dry, Caustic Potash, Solid; Caustic Potash, Liquid; Caustic Potash Solution;  KOH; KOH, Dry; KOH Solution; Potassium Hydroxide; Potassium Hydroxide, Dry; Potassium Hydroxide Solid; Potassium Hydroxide, Liquid; Potassium Hydroxide Solution.

Uses:    Soap manufacture; bleaching; manufacture of potassium carbonate and tetrapotassium pyrophosphate; electrolyte in alkaline storage batteries and some fuel cells; absorbent for carbon dioxide and hydrogen sulfide; dyestuffs; liquid fertilizers; food additive; herbicides; electroplating; mercerizing; paint removers; reagent.

Hazard:    Causes severe burns of eyes, skin, and mucous membranes.

POTASSIUM HYDROXIDE absorbs moisture readily forming caustic solution that  attacks aluminum and zinc. A piece of potassium hydroxide causes liquid chlorine dioxide to explode.  1,2-dichloroethylene and potassium hydroxide forms chloroacetylene, which is explosive and spontaneously flammable in air. It is highly toxic.  A reaction between n-nitrosomethylurea and potassium hydroxide in n-butyl ether resulted in an explosion due to the formation of diazomethane. Potassium persulfate and a little potassium hydroxide and water ignited a polythene (polyethylene) liner of a container by release of heat and oxygen.   Using potassium hydroxide to dry impure tetrahydrofuran, which contains peroxides, may be hazardous. Explosions have occurred in the past. Sodium hydroxide behaves in a similar way as potassium hydroxide. A strong base. Forms caustic solution in water.