Potassium persulfate (K2S2O8) is also called potassium peroxydisulfate. It is a colorless or white triclinic powder found in the form of a crystals. It shows solubility in water, but in alcohol it is insoluble. Potassium persulfate is said to be a strong oxidizing agent, and is used widely for bleaching. It is known to be a stable compound at normal room temperature. Moisture is not absorbed by potassium persulfate and hence it can be easily stored for longer so that it can be used later.
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Some of the uses of potassium persulfate are circuit board cleaning; polymerization initiator; etching of circuit boards; enhancing the water purification treatment processes; aluminum and copper surface activation; disinfection; hair dye decolorization; low formaldehyde adhesive stick along with the speedy oxidation of aromatic hydrocarbons and ethanol, modified starch, degradation by oxidation of harmful gases, and for the bleaching of pulp and textiles in the paper and textile industries, respectively; and oxidative desizing at low temperature.
Potassium persulfate is extensively used as an initiator and a strong oxidizing agent. It is one of the essential constituents of hair dyes, as it is a perfect agent for decolorization. Potassium persulfate is used as bleach activator and desizing agent. It is used for the oxidative degradation of toxic substances or chemicals in closed circular loops in water or a pool, making the process of water treatment easy. It can be used as an analytical reagent, plastic initiator, and oxidant, and in the process of the photofinishing of film. These applications make potassium persulfate an essential commodity in the market as it is used in many industries including cosmetics, water treatment plants, for bleaching purposes, etc.
Though the toxicity of potassium persulfate is mild, continuous exposure to it may lead to major side effects on human health. Some of the adverse effects caused due by exposure to potassium persulfate may lead to cancer, issues related to one’s reproductive systems, and even skin allergies in certain cases.
Sodium sulfate is used as a substitute for potassium persulfate in certain analytical processes due to the similar qualities that are seen in both compounds.
Keeping in mind the mild level of toxicity of potassium persulfate and its wide range of industrial applications, it is expected that the market may experience stable growth in the near future.
Asia Pacific, North America, and Europe are the key regional markets for potassium persulfate at present and are expected to retain the position even in the future. Currently, the market for potassium persulfate is developing considerably in Asia Pacific. Developing countries such as India, China, and Japan are known to have a vast market for potassium persulfate.
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Its applications in fields such as the water treatment, cosmetics, paper, and textile industries are the reasons for its extensive market in the above regions of the world. Some of the major key players operating in the market of potassium persulfate present around the world are Mitsubishi Gas Chemical, ABC Chemicals, ADEKA, BASF, Energy Chemical Co., FMC Corporation, Honeywell, KEMIRA, Suzhou Sunrise Chemical Co Ltd., The DOW Chemical Company, United Initiators, and VR Persulfates Pvt. Ltd.