Copper Carbonate Coursework

IUPAC name

Dicopper carbonate dihydroxide

Other names

copper carbonate hydroxide, cupric carbonate, copper carbonate


CAS Number

3D model (JSmol)

ECHA InfoCard100.013.338



  • InChI=1S/CH2O3.2Cu.2H2O/c2-1(3)4;;;;/h(H2,2,3,4);;;2*1H2/q;2*+2;;/p-4


  • InChI=1/CH2O3.2Cu.2H2O/c2-1(3)4;;;;/h(H2,2,3,4);;;2*1H2/q;2*+2;;/p-4



  • C(=O)([O-])[O-].[OH-].[OH-].[Cu+2].[Cu+2]


Chemical formula

Molar mass123.55 g/mol
Appearancegreen powder
Density4 g/cm3
Melting point200 °C (392 °F; 473 K)
Boiling point290 °C (554 °F; 563 K) decomposes

Solubility in water


Solubility product (Ksp)


Std molar
entropy (S298)

88 J/mol·K

Std enthalpy of
formation (ΔfH298)

−595 kJ/mol
Safety data sheetOxford MSDS[dead link]
GHS pictograms[1]
GHS signal wordWarning

GHS hazard statements

H302, H315, H319, H335[1]

GHS precautionary statements

P261, P305+351+338[1]
Lethal dose or concentration (LD, LC):

LD50 (median dose)

159 mg/kg (rat, oral)
US health exposure limits (NIOSH):

PEL (Permissible)

TWA 1 mg/m3 (as Cu)[2]

REL (Recommended)

TWA 1 mg/m3 (as Cu)[2]

IDLH (Immediate danger)

TWA 100 mg/m3 (as Cu)[2]

Except where otherwise noted, data are given for materials in their standard state (at 25 °C [77 °F], 100 kPa).

N verify (what is YN ?)
Infobox references

Basic copper carbonate is a chemical compound, more properly called copper(II) carbonate hydroxide. It is an ionic compound (a salt) consisting of the ionscopper(II)Cu2+
, carbonateCO2−
3, and hydroxideHO

The name most commonly refers to the compound with formula Cu
3(OH)2. It is a green crystalline solid that occurs in nature as the mineral malachite. It has been used since antiquity as a pigment, and it is still used as such in artist paints, sometimes called verditer, green bice, or mountain green.

Sometimes the name is used for Cu
3)2(OH)2, a blue crystalline solid also known as the mineral azurite. It too has been used as pigment, sometimes under the name mountain blue or blue verditer.

Both malachite and azurite can be found in the verdigrispatina that is found on weathered brass, bronze, and copper. The composition of the patina can vary, in a maritime environment depending on the environment a basic chloride may be present, in an urban environment basic sulfates may be present.[3]

This compound is often improperly called (even in chemistry articles) copper carbonate, cupric carbonate, and similar names. The true (neutral) copper(II) carbonate CuCO3 is not known to occur naturally.[4] It is decomposed by water or moisture from the air, and was synthesized only in 1973 by high temperature and very high pressures.[5]


Basic copper carbonate is prepared by combining aqueous solutions of copper(II) sulfate and sodium carbonate at ambient temperature and pressure. Basic copper carbonate precipitates from the solution, with release of carbon dioxideCO

2 CuSO4 + 2 Na2CO3 + H2O → Cu2(OH)2CO3 + 2 Na2SO4 + CO2

Basic copper carbonate can also be prepared by reacting aqueous solutions of copper(II) sulfate and sodium bicarbonate at ambient conditions. Basic copper carbonate precipitates from the solution, again with release of carbon dioxide:

2 CuSO4 + 4 NaHCO3 → Cu2(OH)2CO3 + 2 Na2SO4 + 3 CO2 + H2O


Basic copper carbonate is decomposed by acids, such as solutions of hydrochloric acidHCl, into the copper(II) salt and carbon dioxide.

"Copper carbonate" was the first compound to be broken down into several compounds: in 1794 by the French chemist Joseph Louis Proust (1754–1826) thermally decomposed it to CO2 and CuO, cupric oxide, a black solid.

The basic copper carbonates, malachite and azurite, both decompose forming CO2 and CuO, cupric oxide.[7]


Both malachite and azurite basic copper carbonates have been used as pigments.[8] One example of the use of both azurite and its artificial form blue verditer[9] is the portrait of the family of Balthasar Gerbier by Peter Paul Rubens.[10] The green skirt of Deborah Kip is painted in azurite, smalt, blue verditer (artificial form of azurite), yellow ochre, lead-tin-yellow and yellow lake. The green color is obviously achieved by mixing blue and yellow pigments.[11]

It has also been used in some types of make-up, like lipstick, although it can also be toxic to humans. It also has been used for many years as an effective algaecide in farm ponds and in aquaculture operations.[citation needed]


External links[edit]

  1. ^ abcCopper(II) carbonate basic
  2. ^ abc"NIOSH Pocket Guide to Chemical Hazards #0150". National Institute for Occupational Safety and Health (NIOSH). 
  3. ^Encyclopedia Of Corrosion Technology (Google eBook), Philip A. Schweitzer P.E.; CRC Press, 2004, ISBN 08247-4878-6
  4. ^Holleman, Arnold Frederik; Wiberg, Egon (2001), Wiberg, Nils, ed., Inorganic Chemistry, translated by Eagleson, Mary; Brewer, William, San Diego/Berlin: Academic Press/De Gruyter, p. 1263, ISBN 0-12-352651-5 
  5. ^Seidel, H.; Ehrhardt, H.; Viswanathan, K.; Johannes, W. (1974). "Darstellung, Struktur und Eigenschaften von Kupfer(II)-Carbonat". Zeitschrift für anorganische und allgemeine Chemie. 410 (2): 138–148. doi:10.1002/zaac.19744100207. ISSN 0044-2313. 
  6. ^Jack Reginald Irons Hepburn (1927): "The chemical nature of precipitated basic cupric carbonate". Article CCCLXXXVI, Journal of the Chemical Society (Resumed), volume 1927, pages 2883-2896. doi:10.1039/JR9270002883
  7. ^Brown, I.W.M.; Mackenzie, K.J.D.; Gainsford, G.J. (1984). "Thermal decomposition of the basic copper carbonates malachite and azurite". Thermochimica Acta. 75 (1-2): 23–32. doi:10.1016/0040-6031(84)85003-0. ISSN 0040-6031. 
  8. ^Valentine Walsh, Tracey Chaplin, Pigment Compendium: A Dictionary and Optical Microscopy of Historical Pigments, 2008, Routledge, ISBN 978-0-7506-8980-9
  9. ^Blue verditer, ColourLex
  10. ^Robert L. Feller, Rubens’s: The Gerbier Family: Technical Examination of the Pigments and Paint Layers, Studies in the History of Art, Vol. 5 (1973), pp. 54-74.
  11. ^Peter Paul Rubens, The Gerbier Family, ColourLex

February 2013

What Is Copper Carbonate Used For?

When a copper atom loses one or two of its electrons it forms positively charged ions known as Cu+1 and Cu+2. Whilst ordinary copper carbonate contains cupric ion (or Cu+2), it may sometimes contain a chemically similar alkaline component. This substance can actually serve a number of applications around industry and life in general; you probably haven’t realized how many purposes it is utilized in today.

Aesthetic and Practical: This substance has a number of aesthetic purposes, most notably in jewellery. The carbonate can also be converted into the metal version of copper, which is highly valuable and serves a number of its own applications. This is achieved through a process of pulverization, sizing, conversion and electrolysis.

Copper Salts: The substance can be converted into copper salts by mixing it with a stronger acid. The resulting salt is complemented with water and carbon dioxide gas. Mixing the carbonate with acetic acid (otherwise known as vinegar) will produce cupric acid, water and carbon dioxide.

Pigments and Colorants: This substance, when pure, should have a mint green colour. When alkaline components have been added, a tinge of blue will be added to the colour. This is often added to paints, varnishes, pottery glazes and even fireworks to impart some of the colour.

Miscellaneous: Small amounts of copper carbonates are used in a variety of animal feeds and fertilizers. It also plays a major role in the creation of pesticides and fungicides. It can also be used to control the growth and spread of aquatic weeds. It is also a common ingredient in the ammonia compounds that are used to treat timber.

As you can see, copper carbonate has a number of uses across a wide variety of industries and products. There are probably a number of products in your own home that include these substances as one of its ingredients; when you next think of it, take a look at the ingredients list of some items. Can you think of any other applications that are only possible thanks to the inclusion of this highly useful and valuable substance?

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