Chemistry Unit 1

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Limestone

  • Limestone is mainly calcium carbonate or CaCO3
  • When it is heated it thermally decomposes to make calcium oxide and carbon dioxide

calcium carbonate ----> calcium oxide + carbon dioxide

CaCO3(s)       ----> CaO(s)            + CO2(g)

  • Calcium carbonate reacts with acid to make calcium salt, carbon dioxide and water

calcium carbonate + sulfuric acid ----> calcium sulfate + carbon dioxide + water

  • Other carbonates that react with acids are magnesium, copper, zinc and sodium
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Disadvantages of Using Limestone

Limestone is known to be susceptible to acid rain

Quarrying of limestone is more expensive than using a different building material that requires a less invasive extraction process

Quarries create permanent disfigurements to the landscape, especially as many valuable sources of the rock lie under national parks and recreational spaces

Quarries destroy the natural habitats of birds and animals

Increased traffic pollution caused by travellers to and from the site

Noise pollution caused by machinery and large vehicles

Health problems could arise from the increased levels of dust in the air, such as asthma

Quarries are detrimental to the tourism industry in what were formerly beautiful areas of countryside

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Advantages of Using Limestone

Limestone can be used to produce other useful materials including cement, concrete and glass

It is cheaper and therefore more economically viable than many other building materials such as marble

Using local stone to build new houses makes them aesthetically pleasing next to older, traditional houses

Limestone is found naturally, so it can be quarried easily

Quarries create jobs locally for quarry workers and contractors

Better roads will be built to cope with traffic for the quarry, which will benefit everyone in the local area

Quarry workers will provide business in the local community for cafes, restaurants and transport networks

Other industries such as cement makers will be attracted to the area as an exciting business opportunity

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