Copper Sulphate >
Material: Copper Sulphate is a naturally occurring chemical compound, also known as
Copper (II) Sulphate, Bluestone or Blue Vitriol. A common salt of copper, it can be found in a
variety of forms which are differentiated by their level of hydration.
In its anhydrous form, copper sulphate is a pale green or grey-white powder. A substance is
termed anhydrous if it does not contain any water. If copper sulphate must be stored in this
form, careful consideration must be taken to prevent the powder absorbing any water
present in the atmosphere. In a stark visual contrast, the more common pentahydrate form
of copper sulphate is a vibrant blue. It is typically produced by combining copper metal and
heated concentrated sulphuric acid, or alternatively, through oxidisation with sulphuric acid.
A major application for copper sulphate is the agricultural industry. It can be used in
infrequent doses as a fertiliser to help correct copper deficiencies in soil, identifiable by a
yellowing of plant leaves. In addition, it works brilliantly as a preventative fungicide. When
mixed with slaked lime, copper sulphate is known as a Bordeaux Mixture. This mix is
commonly used to prevent fungus growing on for example: grapes, melons and berries.
Copper sulphate is also particularly effective against the roots of water-dwelling plants. This
makes it ideal for killing unwanted plants in places like sewers and it is used as an algaecide
in outdoor swimming pools and ponds.
It’s not just plants that can benefit from copper sulphate’s anti-fungus properties. Cattle,
sheep and horses can all receive foot baths containing the chemical to help prevent and
The toxicity of copper sulphate makes it ideal for use in anti-fouling paints. Applied to the
hulls of boats, it helps to prevent marine organisms from latching onto and slowly destroying
One of copper sulphate’s main applications has been in mining where it is used in the
flotation process. Froth flotation is a means of separating valuable lead, zinc, cobalt and gold
ores from other materials by taking advantage of their hydrophobic and hydrophilic
properties. The aim is for the chosen material to float to the top of the mixture from where it
can then be separated. To do this, a ‘collector’ is added to make the material more or less
hydrophobic/hydrophilic. Copper sulphate is used as an activator to help the collectors
absorb onto surface materials that they wouldn’t naturally be able to do.
Elsewhere within the metals industry, copper sulphate can be used in copper plating. A
common example is the copper coating of steel wiring.
Educational establishments will often use copper sulphate as part of their experiments given
its versatility. For example, it used to demonstrate exothermic reactions, grow crystals and
plate copper. One common experiment which also has real world applications, uses copper
sulphate to test for water. When the distinctive blue pentahydrate form is heated, the water
evaporate and the copper sulphate takes on its white powder anhydrous form. If water is
then added in anyway, it will blue again, having reverted back to its pentahydrate form.
Copper sulphate is used as an additive in animal feed to promote growth and correct copper
deficiencies in the animals. It is used in a recipe of mineral pre-mixes that complement the
proper feeding of livestock and poultry. The fine crystals and free flow characteristics of our
Copper Sulphate, make it ideal to combine with other nutrients, allowing animals to achieve
balanced diets. Thanks to its chemical characteristics, that include purity and copper
content, as well as its physical ones, in which the crystal size is very important, we can say,
that Norkem’s copper sulphate is amongst the safest, if not the safest type of copper
sulphate to use for this purpose.Grades: Monohydrate, Pentahydrate, Granular, Technical, Feed and Electroplating.
Packaging: Material is available in 25 or 1,000 kilo nett bulk bags.
Availability: Normally a stock item.