Small amounts of cobalt compounds are found in rocks, plants, and animals, but they are always found in conjunction with other elements and never alone. Cobalt is frequently associated with nickel, and both of these elements can be found in meteoric iron. Metallic cobalt has two crystallographic structures, which are hcp and fcc. Cobalt is protected from oxidation by a passivating oxide film, which makes it a weakly reducing metal. At regular temperatures, cobalt reacts slowly to mineral acids.
Cobalt (II) hydroxide or cobaltous hydroxide is the chemical compound composed of cobalt and the hydroxide ion with the formula Co(OH)2. It occurs in two forms, either as a rose-red powder, which is the more stable of the two forms or as bluish-green powder. It has the brucite or cadmium iodide crystal structure.
It is used as drying agents in paints and inks, battery electrode manufacturing, and in to produce other cobalt compounds.
Cobalt(II) oxide or cobalt monoxide is an inorganic compound that appears as olive-green to red crystals, or as a grayish or black powder. It is used extensively in the ceramics industry as an additive to create blue colored glazes and enamels as well as in the chemical industry for producing cobalt (II) salts.
It is also known to be used in the glass manufacturing process as a coloring agent.
Cobalt Sulfate (CoSO4) is an inorganic compound that appears as red monoclinic crystals. These crystals melt around 250°C. Cobalt is mined from various ores and its most common forms are the hydrates CoSO47H20 and CoSO4H20. It is soluble in water, slightly soluble in ethanol, and very soluble in methanol. Cobalt is an essential compound for most higher forms of life but can be harmful if taken in excess.
Cobalt sulfate is useful in the manufacturing of glass, pigments, batteries, and more. Its water solubility makes it useful in inks and soil additives.
Copper is an element commonly used in electrical wiring, roofing, plumbing, and industrial machinery. It is also used in the nutrition industry as a digestible supplement.
Copper powder is a bronzing powder made by saturating nitrous acid with copper and precipitating the latter by the addition of iron. It is easy to distinguish with its rosy red tint. Copper powder is often used in heat conduction processes.
Copper powder products are distinguished and classified by production method, purity, grain type, and density. Copper's usability depends greatly on the shape of its particles and their surface conditions.
It is used in racing, metallurgy, filtration, printing, surface coating, welding, copper fortification, and sintered + friction products.
Copper Sulfate (CuSO4·5H2O) is a crystalline salt that is soluble in water. It is also slightly soluble in alcohol. In its anhydrous form, copper sulfate has a white color. In its hydrous form, it is blue and is often referred to as blue vitriol. Copper sulfate is produced industrially by treating copper metal or its oxides with sulfuric acid.
For pyrotechnics, it is used to create blue fireworks. It can also be used in agriculture to treat crops as it is a known fungicide, herbicide, and pesticide. It is also used for treating leather and dyeing textiles.
Nickel is a chemical element that can be found in stainless steel, alnico magnets, coins, rechargeable batteries, electric guitar strings, microphone capsules, glass tinting solutions, and various alloys. These alloys include nickel brasses and bronzes, and alloys with copper, chromium, aluminum, lead, cobalt, silver, and gold. Nickel is generally considered an alloy metal and therefore is seen in various daily use items.
Nickel hydroxide is an inorganic compound that decomposes in ammonia and is not compatible with acids. It is highly toxic when heated and is a known carcinogen.
It is frequently used in rechargeable batteries and currently popular in the use of electric car batteries. It is also used as a catalyst in chemical reactions.
Due to the toxicity of the Ni2+ ion, researchers have investigated the addition of calcium or cobalt hydroxides to increase the energy density of the Ni(OH)2 electrodes.
Nickel Oxide, NiO, is famous for being the only well-characterized oxide of nickel. NiO helped make up the nickel-iron battery (Edison Battery). It is a component of fuel cells as well. Nickel oxide was used to make NiCd rechargeable batteries which were historically used in many electronic devices.
Nickel Oxide is found as either a green or black crystal powder. It can be used for making electrical ceramics such as thermistors and varistors and also pigments for ceramic, glasses, and glazes. Its most popular use is as an intermediate in the production of nickel alloys.
Nickel sulfate is a highly soluble, paramagnetic, blue-colored salt. It is a common source of the Ni2+ ion for electroplating.
It is mainly used in chemical nickel plating, aluminum coloring, and battery materials. It is also commonly used in the laboratory to help regenerate columns used in polyhistidine-tagging.
Since it does not have the tendency to hydrate it is sometimes used as a calibrant for magnetic susceptibility measurements.
Zinc (Zn) is chemically similar to magnesium and is the 24th most abundant element in Earth’s crust. The largest zinc supplies are in Australia, Asia, and the US. It is most commonly used to galvanize various metals in order to fight corrosion. Zinc is often combined with copper to create the popular alloy, brass. Not only is brass more ductile and stronger than copper but it also has greater corrosion resistance. Brass is used in communication equipment, hardware, musical instruments, and water valves.
Zinc is the 4th most commonly used metal and historically dates back to ancient greek and roman times. In modern-day, it is used in roofing, batteries, electrical applications, manufacturing of tools and appliances. Nonstructural castings, anti-corrosion agents, galvanization, and alloys are also common applications of zinc metal.
The metal itself is hard and brittle though can become malleable when heated. Zinc is a fair conductor of electricity and has a relatively low melting and boiling points.
It is fairly reactive and tarnishes quickly when exposed to carbon dioxide. It is produced via extractive metallurgy
Zinc oxide (ZnO) is a white powder that is insoluble in water. It is mostly produced synthetically but occurs naturally as the mineral zincite.
About half of zinc oxide’s usage is in the rubber industry. It helps to make rubber a more durable material while also protecting it against fungi. Zinc oxide is also used in great quantities in the concrete industry. The compound expedites processing time and improves concrete’s resistance to water.
Zinc Oxide’s deodorizing and antibacterial properties have made it a hot commodity in the medical industry. It is used in calamine lotions, sunscreen, baby powder, dandruff shampoos, and antiseptic ointments. Cigarette manufacturers make filters of charcoal, iron oxide, and zinc oxide to remove harmful chemicals from tobacco. Zinc Oxide’s nutritional benefits can be enjoyed in several food products including breakfast cereals.
As a pigment Zinc Oxide offers an opaque color used in the makeup and paint industry.
Zinc Sulfate (ZnSO4) is an inorganic compound that is a large source of soluble zinc ions. The heptahydrate is commercially the most commonly used form of zinc sulfate.
Zinc sulfate powder is an eye irritant although the ingestion of small amounts is not deadly. It is an active component in animal foods, agricultural sprays, moss prevention products, and fertilizers.
It is also used for dyeing, leather preservation, and in the medical field as an emetic and astringent.