Chemistry Formulas

Carbonous Acid Formula

Formic acid is another name of carbonous acid. It’s a crucial intermediate in chemical synthesis and occurs naturally. It’s a colourless liquid with a pungent odour. It is found mostly in ants and in stingless bees. And it comparatively has low toxicity and because of this, it’s used as an artificial additive. During this article, we’ll learn more about carbonous acid formula, its chemical structure, its preparation, properties, and uses and solved examples.

Carbonous Acid Formula

Chemical Carbonous Acid Formula is H2CO2. It is the strongest carboxylic acid. It’s reducing properties characteristic of aldehydes. The freezing point of carbonous acid is 8.25°C, the boiling point is 100.7°C and density, 1.2126 g/cm (20°C). Production of it within the industry is from solid caustic soda and carbon monoxide gas (6–8 atmospheres at 120°-150°C). The result’s sodium formate (HCOONa). The decomposition of sodium formate occurs by vitriol.

Carbonous Acid Formula


It is used in mordant dyeing for the decalcification of skins in their preparation for tanning.  For the preparation of esters, formamide, and dimethylformamide and within the canning of juices, it’s useful. Serious use of it is the preservative and antibacterial agent in livestock feed.

We additionally utilize it in place of mineral acids. The use of it is for various cleaning products, like limescale remover and bowl cleaner. Some formate esters are artificial flavourings and perfumes. Beekeepers use acid as a miticide against the tracheal mite.

Chemical Reaction

It may be a source for a formyl group for instance within the formylation of methyl aniline to N-methylformanilide in toluene. The Eschweiler-Clarke reaction and therefore the Leuckart-Wallach reaction is chemical reactions of carbonous acid. It, or more commonly its azeotrope with triethylamine, is additionally in usage as a source of hydrogen in transfer hydrogenation.

CH2O2 + H2SO4 → H2SO4 + H2O + CO

It readily decomposes with concentrated vitriol to make carbon monoxide gas. It is exclusive among the carboxylic acids in its ability to participate additionally reactions with alkenes. Formic acids and alkenes readily react to make formate esters. However, a variant of the Koch reaction occurs instead, and acid adds to the alkene to supply a bigger acid

Preparation of Carbonous Acid

Methyl formate and formamide or methyl formate are responsible for the preparation of it. When methanol and carbon monoxide gas are combined within the presence of a robust base, the result’s methyl formate.


Some routes proceed indirectly by first treating the methyl formate with ammonia to provide formamide, which is then hydrolyzed with sulfuric acid:

HCO2CH3 + NH3 → HC(O)NH2 + CH3OH

2 HC(O)NH2 + 2H2O + H2SO4 → 2HCO2H + (NH4)2SO4

We get propenyl alcohol after the reaction at heat. The reaction is thus:

C2O4H2 → CO2H2 + CO2

Solved Examples for Carbonous Acid Formula

Q1] How decomposition of carbonous acid occurs and state its reaction.

Solution: The treatment of acid with vitriol may be a convenient laboratory source of CO. Within the presence of platinum, it decomposes with a release of hydrogen and CO2.

CH2O2 → H2 + CO2

Q2] Write the Electrochemical production reaction of carbonous acid.

Solution: The reaction is as follows,

HCO−3 + H2O + 2e- → HCO−2 + 2OH−
or CO2 + H2O + 2e- → HCO−2 + OH

CO2 + OH−→ HCO−2 + 1/2 O2


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