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Georgia Journal of Science

Article Title

THE ISOLATION OF CALCIUM OXALATE FROM FRESH SPINACH**

Abstract

Oxalic acid is a highly soluble and naturally occurring diacid found in a variety of vegetables including spinach, rhubarb and parsley. The oxalate anion, however, forms insoluble salts with metal cations, such as magnesium and calcium, (Ksp for Calcium Oxalate = 2.3 x 10-9). These insoluble salts are a significant component of most kidney stones. The focus of our investigation is the isolation of calcium oxalate from fresh spinach. After shredding spinach in a blender and centrifuging the resulting pulp, treatment with calcium hydroxide resulted in the formation of calcium oxalate. A laboratory experiment for general chemistry students incorporating the principles of natural product isolation, acid-base chemistry and solubility is proposed based on the results of this investigation.

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