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Castil, J.*, Alegre, J. L., Almorado, M. J., Andaya, J., Beluan, A. J.
Bachelor of Science in Chemistry – 1, College of Arts and Sciences, Department of Pure
and Applied Chemistry, Visayas State University, Visca, Baybay City, Leyte, Philippines


This experiment was conducted to identify the solubility of common salts in water,
to determine if precipitation reaction occurs between pairs of salts in aqueous solutions and
to identify precipitates formed using the solubility rules. The following solutions: Lead (II)
acetate Pb(OAc)2, Silver nitrate AgNO3, Barium nitrate Ba(NO3)2, Sodium chloride NaCl,
Magnesium sulphate MgSO4, Iron (II) sulphate FeSO4, Calcium chloride CaCl2, Copper
(II) sulphate CuSO4 were added each of these following solutions: Sodium chloride NaCl,
Potassium iodide KI, Potassium nitrate KNO3, Sodium sulphate Na2SO4, Sodium
carbonate Na2CO3, Sodium sulphide Na2S, Sodium phosphate Na3PO4 and was observed
if there was precipitation reaction then was recorded. Solubility of common salts in water
was identified, there were some solutions determined to precipitates which colors and
textures were recorded and precipitates were identified also, using the solubility rules.


A salt is an ionic compound made up of two ions, a positive cation and negative
anion, which dissociates when dissolve in water to form a solution. Salt that dissolves in
water is soluble in water and when it forms precipitate it is insoluble which separate from
the solution when being mixed.
Reference: Brown, T. L. 2016.Chemistry: The Central Science, 14 th Edition; Pearson Inc.: New York. p126.

Figure 1. Precipitate reaction.

Figure 1 shows two solutions being mixed. One solution contains KI dissolved in
water, and the other contains Pb(NO3)2, dissolved in water. The reaction between these two
solutes produces a water-insoluble yellow solid. Reactions that result in the formation of
an insoluble product are called precipitation reactions. A precipitates is an insoluble solid
formed by reaction in solution. This reaction occur when pairs of oppositely charged ions
attract each other strongly that they form insoluble compounds, there are guidelines
concerning the solubilities of common ionic compounds (Brown, 2016). These guidelines
were set of rules of the solubility, the solubility rules (Quevedo, 2019).


all nitrates, chlorates, acetates, and bicarbonates

all compounds containing alkali metal ions

all ammonium compounds

all halides except with Pb2+, Hg2+2, and Ag+

all sulphates except with Pb2+, Hg2+2, Ag+, Ca2+, Sr2+, and Ba2+


all carbonates except with alkali metal ions and ammonium

all phosphates except with alkali metal ions and ammonium

all sulphides except with alkali metal ions and ammonium

all hydroxides except with alkali metal ions and ammonium, Ca2+, Sr2+, Ba2+

It is important to know the solubility because it is used in everyday life also,

solubility plays a major role for drug dosage forms like parental formations as well.
Solubility is one of the important parameters to achieve desired concentration of drug in
systematic circulation for achieving required pharmacological response (Savjani, 2012).

Experimental Procedure

The method used in this experiment was based on the laboratory manual
“Chemistry 117.1 – Inorganic Chemistry I – Lab” (Quevedo, 2019). The material used in
this experiment were as follows: test tube rack, test tubes, dropper and the following
solutions: Pb(OAc)2, NaCl, FeSO4, AgNO3, Ba(NO3)2, MgSO4, CaCl2, CuSO4, Na2SO4,
Na2CO3, Na3PO4, KI, KNO3 and Na2S. The 56 test tube were divided into 7 test tubes of
each of these solutions: Lead (II) acetate Pb(OAc)2, Silver nitrate AgNO3, Barium nitrate
Ba(NO3)2, Sodium chloride NaCl, Magnesium sulphate MgSO4, Iron (II) sulphate FeSO4,
Calcium chloride CaCl2, Copper (II) sulphate CuSO4. The 7 test tubes by each of those
solutions were placed by the corresponding solutions and was marked by the assigned
numbers. The 7 test tubes of each of those solutions were added each by these following
solution: Sodium chloride NaCl, Potassium iodide KI, Potassium nitrate KNO3, Sodium
sulphate Na2SO4, Sodium carbonate Na2CO3, Sodium sulphide Na2S, Sodium phosphate
Na3PO4. The formation of the reaction were recorded and observed whether there was
precipitate or not. (+) was the used to indicate the precipitate and (-) when there was no
formation of precipitate. Solubility rules was used in identifying the solubility of the
Results and Discussions

Table 1. Formation of precipitate between various salts

Na+ K+
Ions K+ and Na+ and Na+ and Na+ Na+ and
and and
present I- SO4- CO32- and S2- PO43-
Cl- NO3-
+ + + + + +
tion (+
Pb+ and PbCl2 PbI2 PbSO4 PbCO3 PbS Pb3(PO4)2
or -), -
OAc (white, (yellow, (white, (white, (dark (white,
fine) fine) fine) fine) brown) fine)
Precipita + + +
+ + +
tion (+ AgCl AgI Ag2S
Ag+ and Ag2SO4 Ag2CO3 Ag3PO4
or -), (clump (clumpy, - (clump
NO3- (clumpy, (clumpy, (clumpy
color, y, light y,
white) white) yellow)
formulas white) green) brown)
tion (+ + + + +
Ba2+ and
or -), - - BaSO4 - BaCO3 BaS Ba3(PO4)2
color, (white) (white) (white) (white)
tion (+
Na+ and
or -), - - - - - - -
tion (+ Mg2+ + +
or -), and - - - - MgCO3 MgS -
color, SO42- (white) (white)
+ +
tion (+ +
and FeCO3 FeS
or -), - - - - Fe3(PO4)2
SO42- (dark (dark
color, (white)
brown) brown)
tion (+ + + + +
or -), - - CaSO4 - CaCO3 CaS CaPO4
and Cl-
color, (white) (white) (white) (white)
tion (+ Cu2+ + + + +
or -), and - CuI2 - - CuCO3 CuS Cu3(PO4)2
color, SO42- (brown) (white) (black) (white)
Chemical reactions:

Pb(OAc)(aq) + 2NaCl(aq) → PbCl2(s) + NaOAc(aq)

Pb(OAc)(aq) + 2KI(aq) → PbI2(s) + 2KOAc(aq)
Pb(OAc)(aq) + Na2SO4(aq) →PbSO4(s) + 2NaOAc(aq)
Pb(OAc)(aq) + KNO3(aq) → no reaction
Pb(OAc)(aq) + Na2CO3(aq) → PbCO3(s) + 2NaOAc(aq)
Pb(OAc)(aq) + Na2S(aq) → PbS(s) + 2NaOAc(aq)
Pb(OAc)(aq) + 2Na3PO4(aq) → Pb3(PO4)2(s) + 2NaOAc(aq)
AgNO3(aq) + NaCl(aq) → AgCl(s) + NaNO3(aq)
AgNO3(aq) + KI(aq) → AgI(s) + KNO3(aq)
2AgNO3(aq) + Na2SO4(aq) → Ag2SO4(s) + Na2NO3(aq)
AgNO3(aq) + KNO3(aq) → no reaction
2AgNO3(aq) + Na2CO3(aq) → Ag2CO3(s) + 2NaNO3(aq)
2AgNO3(aq) + NaS(aq) → Ag2S(s) + 2NaNO3(aq)
3AgNO3 (aq) + Na3PO4(aq) → Ag3PO4(s) + 3NaNO3(aq)
Ba(NO3)2(aq) + 2NaCl(aq) → BaCl2(aq) + 2NaNO3(aq)
Ba(NO3)2(aq) + 2KI(aq) → BaI2(aq) + 2KNO3(aq)
Ba(NO3)2(aq) + Na2SO4(aq) → BaSO4(s) + 2NaNO3(aq)
Ba(NO3)2(aq) + KNO3(aq) → no reaction
Ba(NO3)2(aq) + Na2CO3(aq) → BaCO3(s) + 2NaNO3(aq)
Ba(NO3)2(aq) + Na2S(aq) → BaS(s) + 2NaNO3(aq)
3Ba(NO3)2(aq) + 2Na3PO4(aq) → Ba3(PO4)2(s) + 6 NaNO3(aq)
NaCl(aq) + NaCl(aq) → no reaction
NaCl(aq) + KI(aq) → KCl(aq) +NaI(aq)
NaCl(aq) + Na2SO4(aq) → Na2SO4(aq) + NaCl(aq)
NaCl(aq) + KNO3(aq) → NaNO3(aq) + KCl(aq)
NaCl(aq) + Na2CO3(aq) → Na2CO3(aq) +NaCl(aq)
NaCl(aq) + Na2S(aq) → Na2S(aq) + NaCl(aq)
NaCl(aq) + Na3PO4(aq) → Na3PO4(aq) + NaCl(aq)
MgSO4(aq) + 2NaCl(aq) → MgCl2(aq) + Na2SO4(aq)
MgSO4(aq) + 2KI(aq) → MgI2(aq) + K2SO4(aq)
MgSO4(aq) + Na2SO4(aq) → no reaction
MgSO4(aq) + 2KNO3(aq) → Mg(NO3)2(aq) + K2SO4(aq)
MgSO4(aq) + Na2CO3(aq) → MgCO3(s) + Na2CO4(aq)
MgSO4(aq) + Na2S(aq) → MgS(s) + Na2SO4(aq)
MgSO4(aq) + 2Na3PO4(aq) → Mg3(PO4)2(s) + 3Na2SO4(aq)
FeSO4(aq) + 2NaCl(aq) → FeCl2(aq) + Na2SO4(aq)
FeSO4(aq) + 2KI(aq) → FeI2 (aq)+ K2SO4(aq)
FeSO4(aq) + Na2SO4(aq) → no reaction
FeSO4(aq) + 2KNO3(aq) → Fe(NO3)2(aq) + K2SO4(aq)
FeSO4(aq) + Na2CO3(aq) → FeCO3(s) + Na2SO4(aq)
FeSO4(aq) + Na2S(aq) → FeS(s) + Na2SO4(aq)
3FeSO4(aq) + 2Na3PO4(aq) → Fe3(PO4)2(s) + 3Na2SO4(aq)
CaCl2(aq) + 2NaCl(aq) → no reaction
CaCl2(aq) + 2KI(aq) → CaI2(aq) + 2KCl(aq)
CaCl2(aq) + Na2SO4(aq) → CaSO4(s) + 2NaCl(aq)
CaCl2(aq) + 2KNO3(aq) → Ca(NO3)2(aq) + 2KCl(aq)
CaCl2(aq) + Na2CO3(aq) → CaCO3(s) + 2NaCl(aq)
CaCl2(aq) + Na2S(aq) → CaS(s) + 2NaCl(aq)
3CaCl2(aq) + 2Na3PO4(aq) → Ca3(PO4)2(s) + 6NaCl(aq)
CuSO4(aq) + 2NaCl(aq) → CuCl2 (aq)+ Na2SO4(aq)
CuSO4(aq) + 2KI(aq) → CuI2(aq) + K2SO4(aq)
CuSO4(aq) + Na2SO4(aq) → no reaction
CuSO4(aq) + 2KNO3(aq) → Cu(NO3)2(aq) + K2SO4(aq)
CuSO4(aq) + Na2CO3(aq) → CuCO3(s) + Na2SO4(aq)
CuSO4(aq) +Na2S(aq) → CuS(s) + Na2SO4(aq)
3CuSO4(aq) + 2Na3PO4(aq) → Cu3(PO4)2(s) + 3Na2SO4(aq)

Reference: Brown, T. L. 2016.Chemistry: The Central Science, 14 th Edition; Pearson Inc.: New York. p127.

Figure 2. Solubilty guidelines for common salts in water.

Table 1 shows the formation of precipitates in various salts, (+) indicates the
presence of participates and also the color and texture were recorded, while the (-) indicates
the absence of precipitates or no reaction at all. Pb(OAc)(aq) + 2NaCl(aq) → PbCl2(s) +
NaOAc(aq) was the first reaction, formed white precipitate and fine texture. Precipitates
formed because based on the solubility rules in figure 2 which summarize the solubility
guidelines for common ionic compounds, it is organized according to anion in the
compound, but it also reveals many important facts about cations. Note that all common
ionic compounds of the alkali metal ions (group 1A of the periodic table) and of the
ammonium ions NH4+ are soluble in water (Brown, 2016), Pb2+ was insoluble in Cl-.
According to Brown (2016), any substance less than 0.01 mol/L was will be considered
insoluble. In these cases, the attraction between the oppositely charged ions in the solid is
too great for the water molecules to separate the ions to any significant extent; the substance
remains largely undissolved, that was what happened to the solution that was why it was
insoluble. The colors of the precipitate was the indication of the ions present in the solution,
colors of precipitate help identify compounds and the texture also was the property of the
element, such like the Pb2+ which have the fine texture and Ag+ having clumpy texture
(Davis, 2017). All the solutions that has precipitates were insoluble, precipitation reaction
was results in the formation of an insoluble product, or precipitate. A precipitate was an
insoluble solid that separates from the solution which involve ionic compounds (Chang,
2010). As what table 1 shows, KNO3 was all (-) which indicates absence of precipitate.
KNO3 did not form precipitate because based on the solubility rules all nitrates are solubles.
All solutions indicated with (-) were soluble, no precipitation formed and there were no
reaction just like this reactions: Pb(OAc)2 (aq) + KNO3(aq) → no reaction, AgNO3(aq) +
KNO3(aq) → no reaction and NaCl(aq) + NaCl(aq) → no reaction, there were no reaction
because the anions of the compounds being mixed were the same.
At the end of the experiment solubility of common salts in water was identified,
compounds with common anions were solubles also have no reaction and solutions that
formed precipitate were insolubles. Furthermore, precipitation was identified using the
solubility rules and found out that the colors and textures were properties of the element.

The fulfilment of this activity could not be possible without the help and
participation of many people; their contributions are greatly appreciated. The student
would like to express deepest gratitude to Almighty God, for his guidance, enlightenment
and protection for the completion of this activity. Dr. Elizabeth S. Quevedo for sharing her
knowledge, suggestions, guidance and teachings for the success of this activity. Also, to
the group mates, classmates, dorm mates, for the ideas and participation. Thank you so
much and God bless!

Brown, T. L. 2016.Chemistry: The Central Science, 14th Edition; Pearson Inc: New York.
Chang, R. 2010. General Chemistry, 10th Edition; McGraw-Hill Companies, Inc.:New
York. p124.
Davis, P. 2017. Precipitates colors, anions and cations. Retrieved from CHEMISTRY
(accessed on 5 March 2019).
Savjani, J. K. 2012. Drug Solubility Importance. Retrieved from ISRN Pharmaceuticals:
https://www.ncbi.nlm.nih.gov/pmc/articles/PMC3399483/. (accessed on 5 March 2019).
Quevedo, E. S. (2019). Laboratory Manual in Chem 117.1 - Inorganic Chemistry I Lab.
Baybay, Leyte, Philippines: Department of Pure and Applied Chemistry.