road salt


road salt 

*What is road salt?
 or wh
at is road salt made of ?
or what is the use of road salt?
What is the chemical composition of road salt ?

*Road salt is usually sodium chloride or
common salt (sometimes mixed with some additives
 like magnesium chloride or calcium chloride
and some byproducts of distillation and some
anti caking agents.)

*So road salt is not safe (not edible ) for human
consumption (eating)

*The freezing point of salty water is lower than
that of pure water.

*Road salt is used to try and prevent water from
freezing / melt ice on the roads
 by lowering the freezing point of water
and thus control ice on roads.

*Usually brine ( salt solution ) spread
on roads before snow fall will lower the freezing
point of water and also reduce the bonding
between ice and the road and make the removal of
snow easier.

*Road salt is not very effective against ice
at temperature below -15 degree celsius.

*Potassium chloride / calcium chloride
 is much  more expensive than road salt.

*In some places, sand / gravel is mixed with salt
for improving the traction for the wheels
of the vehicles on the roads.
Also impurities usually lower the
melting point / freezing point of water.

*Urea can also be used as a to melt the ice
on the roads.

*What are the environmental dangers from
road salt?
The road salt that is spread on the roads
during snow time gets accumulated into
water systems, roadside plants and forest
 ecosystems and can affect the whole food
 web and has harmful effects on aquatic
animals, fishes etc and might also aid some
of the harmful invasive species.

*Winter road salt can kill the grass where the
water from the ice melt flows off.

*The chloride ions are usually transported to the
leaves giving them a brownish colour, while the
sodium part damages the roots and the soil
reducing the water retention ability .

*Moose are said to be attracted by road salt.

*Walking through salt on the roads
 is harmful to the paws of dogs

*Road salt has a corrosive effect on leather
used in shoes.

*The road salt can also seep into concrete and
damage the steel rods and bars used for
reinforcement in bridges.

*Road salt may also be a cause of rusting on the
underside of vehicles/ cars which are constantly
driven over roads where road salt is being used.

*Some places use cheese brine (which is a byproduct)
of the cheese making process on the roads to
remove ice.

*Sometimes sugar beet juice byproducts are used
to reduce the wastage of the road salt.

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