Potassium hydroxide is an inorganic compound used in a range of industrial applications. A strong base also known as caustic potash, its chemical formula is KOH, and its CAS number is 1310-58-3. Potassium hydroxide is highly corrosive. Though similar to sodium hydroxide, or NaOH, potassium hydroxide is produced in much smaller amounts and used less frequently in industry and manufacturing.
Chemical Properties and Manufacturing
Most manufacturers sell potassium hydroxide in the form of translucent pellets, which react with air to become tacky to the touch. Potassium hydroxide is odorless and water soluble, with high thermal stability and a low melting point.
Chemical manufacturers produce an average of 700,000 to 800,000 Metric Tons of potassium hydroxide per year. Currently, most facilities produce KOH by electrolyzing a potassium chloride solution. The process is similar to that used to manufacture sodium hydroxide.
Potassium hydroxide has several applications. It is a common precursor to other potassium products, including potassium carbonate, potassium cyanide, potassium permanganate, and more. Potential applications for these products include fertilizers, fire suppressants, water treatment, and fruit preservation.
Other uses for potassium hydroxide include biodiesel production, where it acts as a catalyst for the transesterification process, turning vegetable fats into usable fuel and creating glycerine — a common livestock feed supplement — as a byproduct. KOH is also commonly used in the production of polyether polyols, phenolic-formaldehyde resins, melamine-formaldehyde resins, and urea-formaldehyde resins.
Though more expensive than NaOH, the increased solubility of KOH makes it more desirable for use in soaps and as an electrolyte. It is also used for wet etching during semiconductor manufacturing, along with other specialized applications.
For a full list of potential uses for our potassium hydroxide products, please contact Brenntag North America directly.
Brenntag North America works with leading manufacturers to offer a range of potassium hydroxide products. Our products come in various sizes, grades, and configurations for use in many industrial applications. We serve customers in industries ranging from food and beverage manufacturing to oil and gas, cosmetics, lubricants, and more.
Below, you can find our current list of potassium hydroxide products. Visit individual pages to view detailed specifications and learn more. If we do not have what you are looking for, call us for assistance sourcing a suitable replacement.
Your Source for Chemicals and Speciality Products
Our inventory includes more than 10,000 products by manufacturers such as BASF, Dow Chemical, and others. We sell potassium hydroxide in multiple grades and concentrations, from 1.7 percent solutions to 30 percent and 35 percent pure KOH flakes and pellets.
Find out why we are the global leader in industrial chemicals by placing an order today. With 190 distribution centers across the US and Canada, we are well-positioned to fulfill any request and back it up with excellent on-site service as necessary. Place an order online or contact our office for assistance.