Gypsum is a very soft sulfate mineral composed of calcium sulfate dihydrate, with the chemical formula CaSO4·2H2O. It is a white and smooth powder that is derived from heating gypsum stone. Mined form is crushed, heat-dried and ground to a powder. This powder is used in various industrial, construction and agricultural applications
One of the most common forms of raw gypsum is a pure white crystal called alabaster. Another form of unprocessed product forms in desert terrain and its crystals resemble the petals of a flower. For this reason, many people refer to this form of calcium sulphate as the ‘desert rose’. Because the calcium and sulphur molecules in calcium sulfate dihydrate are chemically bound to water, it is routinely heated in order to remove 50% to 75% of its original moisture. The resulting powder is considered burnt product, although its white or translucent color does not change.
Used As Fertilizer
Gypsum powder-based fertilizer effectively loosens hard subsoil or layers of clay in the garden. It penetrates the clay matrix and loosens its structure. It improves the composition of soil, prevents water runoff and soil erosion, facilitates water and air movement and root growth, converts salty soil into neutral soil, reduces the bulk compactness of tough soil, controls dust erosion, prevents water logging by improving the drainage capability of soil and renders magnesium harmless.
The calcium content of gypsum balances excess micro-nutrients in soil, such as copper, manganese, zinc and iron. It supplies sulfur, improves the grade of produced fruit and prevents diseases. Otherwise, the chemical is neutral and will not change the pH of the soil.
Used In Tofu
Calcium sulfate dihydrate(CAS No. 10101-41-4) is used as a coagulant/solidifier in the production of tofu. Calcium sulfate tofu is high in magnesium, calcium and iron and low in fat. It makes a sweet (or neutral), light and velvety textured tofu. A coagulant is a substance that causes a solid or a liquid to coagulate or thicken.
For Drywall Panels
Another common use for gypsum is the formation of drywall panels. During home construction, drywall panels are nailed into place to form a finished wall. It is naturally resistant to fire and heat, which helps it form a barrier between combustible wooden frames and the room itself. Gypsum drywall boards can also be cut to size without elaborate tools, making an ideal building material.