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Copper (II) Carbonate Formula – Structure, Properties, Uses, Sample Questions

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  • Last Updated : 30 May, 2022
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Copper (Cu) is one of the elements that was never discovered. They have been a part of every stage in the evolution of civilization. The metal has been utilized for so long that it can be found isolated as a pure element. One may be tunneling in a mine and come find pure copper in a variety of forms. It is the 29th element in the periodic table, denoted by the symbol ‘Cu’ from the Latin term ‘cuprum.’ Copper is a soft but strong metal. It combines easily with other metals to make alloys such as bronze and bronze. Bronze is a tin-copper alloy, whereas brass is a zinc-copper alloy. Copper and brass can be recycled quickly. Perhaps 70% of the copper that is now in use has been recycled at least once.  Copper has a density of 8.96 and an atomic number of 29. Copper has been an important element of human culture for thousands of years. Silver, gold, copper, and iron have all been used in some way.

Copper II Carbonate 

Cupric Carbonate is another name for Copper II Carbonate. Furthermore, it is a chemical substance. It is also an ionic solid compound composed of copper (II) cations Cu2+ and carbonate anions CO2-3. The term copper carbonate or cupric carbonate is most usually used to refer to a basic copper carbonate such as Cu2(OH)2CO3. This can be found in nature in the form of the mineral malachite or the azurite mineral Cu3(OH)2(CO3)2. As a result, the qualifier neutral can be used in place of basic, which specifically refers to CuCO3

Chemical Formula of Copper II Carbonate 

CuCO3 is the formula for Copper II Carbonate.

Structure of Copper II Carbonate 

Copper II Carbonate.

Physical Properties of Copper II Carbonate 

The chemical formula of Copper II carbonateCuCO3
The molecular weight of Copper II carbonate123.5549
Copper II carbonate Solubility in waterReacts with water under normal conditions
Chemical names of Copper II carbonate Cupric carbonate, neutral copper carbonate

Chemical Properties of Copper II carbonate 

  • When heated in the air, it decomposes into copper oxide, water, and carbon dioxide.
  • It is also acid-soluble and produces the corresponding copper salt.
  • To produce a copper complex, it is also soluble in an aqueous solution of cyanide, ammonium salt, and an alkali metal carbonate.
  • When boiled in water or heated in an alkaline solution, it produces brown oxide.
  • It is extremely unstable in a hydrogen sulfide atmosphere and can react with it to form copper sulfide.
  • Being in the air for an extended period of time causes it to emit CO2 by absorbing moisture. It then gradually transforms into a green malachite composition. 
  • The stability of dry CuCO3 is highly dependent on the partial pressure of carbon dioxide (PCO2). It can be stable in dry air for months, but it decomposes slowly into CuO and CO2 if PCO2 is less than 0.11 atm.
  • At a temperature of 25°C in water or moist air, CuCO3 is only constant for PCO2 over 4.57 atmospheres and has a pH between 4 and 8.
  • It is strongly reactive with water below the partial pressure and forms a basic carbonate – (azurite, Cu3(CO3)2(OH)2)

3CuCO3 + H2O → Cu3(CO3)2(OH)2 + CO2

Preparation of Copper II Carbonate 

  • In ambient circumstances, solutions of Copper II Sulfate CuSO4 and sodium carbonate Na2CO3 are mixed. This results in the formation of a basic carbonate and the release of CO2. This is due to the Cu2+ ion’s high reactivity for the hydroxide anion HO.
  • The basic carbonate is then thermally decomposed at air pressure to generate Copper II oxide CuO instead of the carbonate. 
  • W. F. T. Pistorius claimed in 1960 that synthesis could be accomplished by heating basic copper carbonate at 180 °C for 36 hours in a carbon dioxide CO2 (450 atm) atmosphere and water (50 atm). The obtained bulk was well-crystallized malachite Cu2CO3(OH)2. However, a little amount of a rhombohedral material, which was claimed to be CuCO3, was also recovered. Because this synthesis was not particularly reliable, it was terminated.
  • The reliable synthesis of genuine Copper II Carbonate was reported in 1973 by Hartmut Ehrhardt and coworkers. The resulting chemical compound was grey in color and was formed when basic copper carbonate was heated in a carbon dioxide atmosphere produced by the breakdown of silver oxalate Ag2C2O4 at 500°C and 2 GPa (20,000 atm). The compound obtained was described as having a monoclinic structure. 

Uses of Copper II Carbonate 

  • Copper carbonate is utilized in a variety of applications. It is frequently used to produce compounds for the treatment of wood.
  • Copper carbonate is combined with arsenic to generate acetoarsenite, often known as Paris green. This substance is used to preserve the wood. Copper carbonate is an active element in animal feeds and is in high demand in animal fodder. 
  • Copper carbonate is a popular method for converting the chemical into copper salts. The combination is initially treated with a more vital acid during the procedure. Water and carbon dioxide gas are then introduced in the next stage.
  • Vinegar (acetic acid) is combined with carbonate to produce water, cupric acid, and carbon dioxide. It is also utilized for a variety of esthetical functions. Jewelry is one of the most prominent application areas. 
  • Due to the sheer unique color of each component, they are utilized as colorants and pigments. In its purest form, the combination is mint green. The inclusion of alkaline components results in a blue tint. These hues are excellent coloring agents. They are utilized as a pigment in a variety of applications, including paints and varnishes. Copper carbonate is used in artist paints to get the desired hues, and it is also known by other names such as verditer and mountain green. Copper carbonate is a popular pigment and colorant in fireworks and ceramic glazes. 
  • Copper Carbonate is a byproduct of the production of Copper Chromite catalysts. The hydrogenolysis of fatty methyl esters in the formation of fatty alcohol is the greatest (industrial scale) application of copper chromite catalysts. Copper Chromite has a high hydrogenation activity for aldehydes and ketones to their corresponding alcohols, as well as nitro-compounds to primary amines. To minimize reaction rate and regulate synthesis in the reactor, some applicators use Copper Oxide Black instead of Copper Carbonate. 

Sample Questions 

Question 1: Is copper carbonate an organic or inorganic compound?


Copper carbonate (CuCO3) is an inorganic chemical compound with the formula CuCO3. Cupric carbonate is another name for this chemical, which exists as an ionic salt containing copper ions in a +2 oxidation state and carbonate anions. Copper carbonate quickly interacts with water or airborne moisture. 

Question 2: What is the source of the green color in copper II carbonate?


Copper carbonate is continuously present in the environment as copper carbonate hydroxide. When the copper powder reacts with oxygen, it forms an opaque coating of copper oxide that is green or bluish-grey in colour. This coating is known as the patina. As a result, copper carbonate has a green colour. 

Question 3: Is copper II carbonate an ionic or a covalent compound?


Cupric carbonate, often known as copper(II) carbonate, is a chemical compound having the formula CuCO3. It is an ionic solid (a salt) at room temperature, composed of copper(II) cations Cu2+ and carbonate anions CO23+

Question 4: How can copper carbonate be removed?


Water soaking or steam washing should remove contaminated copper sulphate unless it is a copper carbonate or basic carbonate. 

Question 5: What happens when you mix copper carbonate with water?


Copper carbonate is a solid that is insoluble in water. It is difficult to recover the copper because the carbonate cannot dissolve into copper ions and carbonate ions. When an acid is added to carbonate water, it produces carbon dioxide and a salt. 

Question 6: Is copper carbonate considered a mineral?


Malachite, a small ore but a widespread copper mineral, basic copper carbonate, Cu2CO3(OH)2. Malachite is a prospecting guide for copper because of its unusual brilliant green colour and presence in the weathered zone of nearly all copper deposits . 

Question 7: What occurs when sulfuric acid is mixed with a copper carbonate?


A neutralization reaction will occur between copper carbonate and sulphuric acid. Copper carbonate is a base, whereas sulphuric acid is an acid. This reaction is also known as a twofold displacement reaction. 

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