Monday, May 23, 2016
Sodium bicarbonate is CHNaO3 while sodium carbonate is Na2CO3. Simply heat baking soda or sodium bicarbonate in a 200°F oven for about an hour. Carbon dioxide and water will be given off. Dry sodium carbonate will remain. This is soda ash. The compound will readily absorb water, forming the hydrate. You can store the dry sodium carbonate in a sealed container or with a desiccant to keep it dry or allow it to form the hydrate, as desired.
Sodium carbonate is a food additive (E500) used as an acidity regulator, anticaking agent, raising agent, and stabilizer. It is one of the components of kansui, a solution of alkaline salts used to give ramen noodles their characteristic flavor and texture. Also could be used as part of a water softener.