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calcium chloride

calcium chloride, CaCl 2, chemical compound that is crystalline, lumpy, or flaky, is usually white, and is very soluble in water. The anhydrous compound is hygroscopic it rapidly absorbs water and is used to dry gases by passing them through it. Calcium chloride is commercially available usually as the dihydrate, CaCl 2·2H 2O it is used to melt ice on roads, to control dust, in brines for refrigeration, and as a preservative in foods. It is also used in the monohydrate and hexahydrate forms. Calcium chloride is a byproduct of the Solvay process (a major source of the compound) and is present in natural brines.

The Columbia Electronic Encyclopedia, 6th ed. Copyright © 2012, Columbia University Press. All rights reserved.

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