Borates are the salts but also the esters of boric acid. Boron forms a wide variety of minerals in a wide variety of oxidation states, almost all of which also have flame-retardant properties.
Important borates in industry and technology are sodium tetraborate, calcium borate and boric acid.
Boric acid and borax are used in flame retardants. They bind water in their crystals in the form of crystal water. When burning, this water is released first. On the one hand, this has a cooling effect, on the other hand, it has a gas-diluting effect during evaporation, which separates the flame from the surrounding oxygen. In this way, a fire can be nipped in the bud.
Sodium tetraborate is used as a flux in brazing and as a wood preservative against fungal and insect infestation. It is found in soaps and powders for oily skin, bleaching creams and various skin care products. It is used in the manufacture of glass, fiberglass insulation, fiberglass mat, enamel, boric acid, and sodium perborate. Also used for glazes, to stiffen fabrics and as a flame retardant finish for wood and textiles.
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