Sulfuric Acid

Among the many plants in Ontario where sulfuric acid is produced, there are
three major plant locations that should be noted on account of their greater
size. These are: (1) Inco. - Sudbury, (2) Noranda Mines Ltd. - Welland, and (3)

Sulfide - Ontario There are a number of factors which govern the location of
each manufacturing plant. Some of these factors that have to be considered when
deciding the location of a Sulfuric Acid plant are: a. Whether there is ready
access to raw materials; b. Whether the location is close to major
transportation routes; c. Whether there is a suitable work force in the area for
plant construction and operation; d. Whether there is sufficient energy
resources readily available; e. Whether or not the chemical plant can carry out
its operation without any unacceptable damage to the environment. Listed above
are the basic deciding factors that govern the location of a plant. The
following will explain in greater detail why these factors should be
considered.1) Raw Materials The plant needs to be close to the raw materials
that are involved in the production of sulfuric acid such as sulfur, lead,
copper, zinc sulfides, etc..2) Transportation A manufacturer must consider
proximity to transpor- tation routes and the location of both the source of raw
materials and the market for the product. The raw materials have to be
transported to the plant, and the final product must be transported to the
customer or distributor. Economic pros and cons must also be thought about. For
example, must sulfuric plants are located near the market because it costs more
to transport sulfuric acid than the main raw materials, sulfur. Elaborate
commission proof container are required for the transportation of sulfuric acid
while sulfur can be much more easily transported by truck or railway car. 3)

Human Resources For a sulfuric acid plant to operate, a large work force will
obviously be required. The plant must employ chemists, technicians,
administrators, computer operators, and people in sales and marketing. A large
number of workers will also be required for the daily operation of the plant. A
work force of this diversity is therefore likely to be found only near major
centres of population.4) Energy Demands Large amounts of energy will also be
required for the production of many industrial chemicals. Thus, proximity to a
plentiful supply of energy is often a determining factor in deciding the plant's
location. 5) Environmental Concerns Most importantly, however, concerns about
the environment must be carefully taken into consideration. The chemical
reaction of changing sulfur and other substances to sulfuric acid results in the
formation of other substances like sulfur dioxide. This causes acid rain.

Therefore, there is a big problem about sulfuric plants causing damage to our
environment as the plant is a source of sulfur emission leading to that of acid
rain.6) Water Supplies Still another factor is the closeness of the location of
the plants to water supplies as many manufacturing plants use water for cooling
purposes. In addition to these factors, these questions must also be answered:

Is land available near the proposed site at a reasonable cost? Is the climate of
the area suitable? Are the general living conditions in the area suitable for
the people involved who will be relocating in the area? Is there any suggestions
offered by governments to locate in a particular region? The final decision on
where the sulfuric acid plant really involves a careful examination and a
compromise among all of the factors that have been discussed above.Producing

Sulfuric Acid Sulfuric acid is produced by two principal processes-- the chamber
process and the contact process. The contact process is the current process
being used to produce sulfuric acid. In the contact process, a purified dry gas
mixture containing 7-10% sulfur dioxide and 11-14% oxygen is passed through a
preheater to a steel reactor containing a platinum or vanadium peroxide
catalyst. The catalyst promotes the oxidation of sulfur dioxide to trioxide.

This then reacts with water to produce sulfuric acid. In practice, sulfur
trioxide reacts not with pure water but with recycled sulfuric acid.The
reactions are: 2SO2 + O2 --* 2SO3 SO3 + H2O --* H2SO4 The product of the contact
plants is 98-100% acid. This can either be diluted to lower concentrations or
made stronger with sulfur trioxide to yield oleums. For the process, the sources
of sulfur dioxide may be produced from pure sulfur, from pyrite, recovered from
smelter operations or by oxidation of hydrogen sulfide recovered from the
purification of water gas, refinery gas, natural gas and other fuels. Battery

Acid Industry Many industries depend on sulfuric acid. Among