World’s most strongest acid & World’s Strongest Superacid
10 Benzoic Acid
Benzoic acid with chemical formula as C7H6O2, it is a transparent and scented carboxylic acid in the form of crystals. For a very long time, gum benzoin was its only source and the name of the acid is derived from it.
The acid was found in as early as 16th century. The gum benzoin was first described in its dry distillation form in the year 1556 by Nostradramus, in 1560 by Alexius Pedemontanus and in 1596 by Blaise de Vigenére. The major breakthrough in the work came in the year 1830 by Antoine Boutron-Charlard and Pierre Robiquet, which were able to produce Bezaldehyde, but couldn’t succeed in its interpretation. This was completed by Friedrich Wöhler and Justun von Liebig in the year 1832, who could successfully determine the benzoic acid’s composition. Antifungal properties of the acid were discovered by Salkowski in 1875 and were used as a preservative in foods for a long time. The acid is found naturally in some plants and the esters and salts of the acid are called benzoates.
9 Oxalic Acid
The acid with chemical formula as C2H2O4 is organic compound of transparent color and the solution formed in the water is also colorless. It is the simplest form of dicarboxylic acid, with its condensed formula as HOOCCOOH.
The existence of Oxalic acid can be traced back to 1745, when Herman Boerhaave, physician and botanist discovered salt from the sorrel. In 1773, François Pierre Savary discovered oxalic acid in salt from sorrel. In 1776, the acid was extracted from reacting sugar using nitric acid by Torbern Olof Bergman and Carl Wilhelm Scheele from Sweden. The acid is majorly produced by oxidation of glucose or carbohydrates using air or nitric acid in vanadium pentoxide’s presence. The chemical is mainly used as mordant in the process of dying and also as bleaches for pulpwood. Excessive intake or prolonged contact with the skin can be harmful.
8 Phosphoric Acid
As called as orthophosphoric acid has a H3PO4 as its chemical formula and is an inorganic or mineral acid. The word ortho is used as a prefix to differentiate it from other types of phosphoric acids. When the acid is pure, it is solid at room temperature & pressure.
The acid is produced industrially in two ways- wet process and thermal process, which has two sub-processes. The commercial sector is dominated by wet process and thermal process is more expensive and used in food industry. 90% of the product produced is used as a fertilizer. In the food grade, it is used in products like jams and colas, which gives sour or tangy taste. The salts from phosphoric acid like monocalcium phosphate as leavening agents and also used to remove rust. The aqueous solution of 85% is the most common source of the chemical and is transparent, non-volatile and odorless. Although, it doesn’t come under the definition of strong acid, it is strong enough to be a corrosive.
7 Chloric Acid
Chlorine’s oxoacid, chloric acid has HCIO3 as its chemical composition. It is an oxidizing agent and a strong acid.
The chemical is stable in chilled aqueous solution up to 30% concentration and 40% solution can be formed in reduced pressure with careful evaporation. The chemical is strong and most flammables and organics, when in contact will deflagrate. The acid is manufactured by reacting barium chlorate and sulfuric acid and also by heating hypochlorous acid, which produces hydrogen chloride and chloric acid. The chemical is transparent and has hydrochloric acid, hydrochlorous acid, chlorous acid and perchloric acid as its related compounds.
6 Perchloric Acid
Known to be a stronger chemical than nitric and sulfuric, it is a colorless mineral acid with HCIO4 as its chemical formula. When it is hot, the chemical is a powerful oxidizer, but safe with 70% weight of aqueous solution at room temperature and has no properties to oxidize, but strong features of acid.
The chemical is produced using two methods for industrial purpose. One is exploiting sodium perchlorate’s solubility and then treats it with hydrochloric acid. The other method involves aqueous chlorine’s anodic oxidation at platinum electrode, which is comparatively direct method. In labs, barium perchlorate is treated with sulfuric acid which induces barium sulfate and leaves perchloric acid. Another method is, mixing ammonium perchlorate with nitric acid and boiled adding the hydrochloric acid. The acid is mainly used as a rocket fuel and with growth in rocket industry; millions of kilograms are produced yearly.
5 Hydroiodic Acid
Also called as hydriodic acid, is an aqueous solution made of Hydrogen iodide is highly acidic. It is considered to be the strongest among hydrohalic acid. It is chemical used commonly as reagent and a strong acid, when in aqueous solution, ionize completely. The pH of concentrated chemical is lower than 0. The chemical is transparent and has acrid odor.
The acid reacts readily with oxygen and forms deep color. The chemical is a part of Federal DEA List I chemical and is highly used as a reducing agent. It is commonly used to produce methamphetamine by reducing it with red phosphorus and HI in America. Due to its restricted sales, iodine and red phosphorus is used to produce hydroiodic acid.
4 Hydrobromic Acid
When hydrogen bromide is dissolved in water, hydrobromic acid is formed. It is a solution of aqueous nature when boiling constantly and distills at a temperature of 124.3ºC and has 47.6% hydrogen bromide by weight. It is stronger than the hydrochloric acid but less than hydroiodic acid. In mineral acids, it is the strongest acid known.
The chemical is majorly used to manufacture inorganic bromides, mostly calcium, sodium and zinc bromides. Certain ores are extracted using it and is also used as a catalyses the alkaline reactions. Some of its organic compounds produced industrially are tetrabromobis, bromoacetic and allyl bromide.
3 Nitric Acid
Also called as spirit of niter and Aqua Fortis, the chemical formula is HNO3. The chemical is a mineral acid and highly corrosive. The pure form of the chemical is colorless and old chemical is yellowish in color. The yellow color is due to decaying into nitrogen oxides and water. The commonly available acid water concentration of 68% and when the concentration goes up to 86%, the chemical is called “fuming nitric acid”.
The chemical is normally stored in a brown bottle of glass as it is prone to decomposition by light. The acid is mainly used in the fertilizer production and when neutralized, produced ammonium nitrate. This usage consumes 75-80% of the produce. It is also used in manufacturing of explosives, organic compounds and nylon precursors.
2 Hydrochloric Acid
It is hydrogen chloride solution in water, which is highly pungent and has HCL as its chemical formula. The chemical is used highly in industrial sector and is a mineral acid, which is corrosive. It is naturally found in gastric acid and the acid forms hydrochloride salt when reacted with any organic base.
In olden times, it was called spirit of salt, acidum salis and muriatic acid, because of its production using green vitriol and rock salt and later using sulfuric acid and common salt. The acid was formally reported by Libavius in 16th century and was used in scientific researches by Davy, Glauber and Priestley in the later years. One of the major uses of the acid is refining of steel and rust removal before further processing. The fuming acid can damage human tissue, with capability of damaging eyes, respiratory organs, intestine and skin irreversibly. It is also used as cleaning agent in households, gelatin production, food additives, leather processing and descaling.
1 Sulphuric Acid
It is the strongest mineral acid, which is highly corrosive and has H2SO4 as its chemical formula. It is pungent-ethereal liquid which can dissolve in water and is transparent to yellowish in color. Sometimes, it is given dark brown color as an alert to the hazards of it to the people. In olden times, it was called oil of vitriol.
The chemical is produced using conventional method of contact process using oxygen, water and sulfur. Wet sulfuric acid process is also used. The chemical is considered very important and the production of it indicates the industrial strength of the country. About 60% of the production is used in making fertilizers, 20% for the production of synthetic resins, detergents, dyestuffs, petroleum catalyst etc. About 6% is used in paints, printing ink, enamels etc.