Soda Ash (Light & Dense)
Soda ash, the common name for sodium carbonate (Na2CO3), has significant economic importance because of its applications in manufacturing glass, chemicals, paper, detergents and many other products. It has been used since ancient times. The Egyptians, for instance, umade glass containers from soda ash as early as 3500 BC. And the early Romans expanded its use beyond glass as an ingredient in medicinals and bread.
Much of the world’s supply of natural soda ash comes from trona ore. The largest known trona deposits are found in the Green River Basin, a prehistoric alkaline lakebed in southwest Wyoming known to geologists as the Gosiute Lake. It is here, on 67 billion tons of trona deposits, that General Chemical established its Green River facility in 1968. This facility has been expanded over the years and now has a nameplate capacity of 2.8 million tons.
The Green River facility converts trona ore to soda ash in a multi-step purification process. First, crushed Soda ash is a white, anhydrous, powdered or granular material containing more than 99% sodium carbonate (Na2CO3) when shipped.
The accepted commercial standard for soda ash is expressed in terms of the equivalent sodium oxide (Na2O) content. A 99.5% soda ash is equivalent to 58.2% Na2O (the conversion equation is: % Na2CO3 x 0.585 = % Na2O).
Soda ash is an alkali that has a high pH in concentrated solutions. It can irritate the eyes, respiratory tract and skin. It should not be ingested, because it can corrode the stomach lining.
Soda ash is made in three main grades — light, intermediate and dense. These differ only in physical characteristics, such as bulk density and particle size and shape (which affects flow characteristics and angle