Calcium Hydroxide

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Chemical
Calcium Hydroxide
Common Name(s): Hydrated Lime

Slaked Lime

Molecular Formula: Ca(OH)2
Used For: Maintaining calcium and alkalinity

Killing Aiptasia sp.

Caution: Corrosive

Don't inhale dust

Avoid skin and eye contact

Material Safety Data Sheet: Calcium hydroxide


Introduction

Calcium hydroxide (molecular formula = Ca(OH)2) is used to make up kalkwasser, a saturated solution of calcium hydroxide in pure water, to add both calcium and alkalinity to a marine aquarium. It should NEVER be added directly to saltwater and cannot be used to increase the concentration of either calcium or alkalinity separately (it increases both of them together).

It can also be used to make a concentrated solution or paste; to inject into or smothered over pests such as Aiptasia sp.

Handle the calcium hydroxide powder or solution with care as it has a high pH, 12-13 depending on the concentration, and therefore can cause significant tissue damage. In particular, care should be taken not to inhale the powder which can easily become suspended in the air.

Sources

  • Commercially available, marine aquarium hobby additives -
  • Builders lime - purity will be around 80-90%, with calcium carbonate, magnesium oxide, iron oxide, aluminium oxide, and silicon dioxide (in approximately decreasing composition order).
  • Plasterers lime - purity will be around 95% calcium hydroxide, with calcium carbonate, magnesium oxide, iron oxide, aluminium oxide, and silicon dioxide (in approximately decreasing composition order).
  • Chemical supply companies

Gallery

Resources

References