Chemistry

Difference Between Deliquescent, Efflorescent and Hygroscopic

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Main Difference

The main difference between Deliquescent, Efflorescent, and Hygroscopic is that Deliquescent materials produce an aqueous solution through the absorption of water vapor, whereas Efflorescent materials do not absorb water, while the Hygroscopic materials do not provide an aqueous solution, but they usually absorb water vapor.

Deliquescent vs. Efflorescent vs. Hygroscopic

Deliquescent substances are considered as solids that mostly absorb moistness from the surrounding until they dissolve completely in the absorbed water and produce the solution. On the other hand, efflorescent substances are also considered as solids that undergo natural loss of water from hydrated salts. On the flip side, the hygroscopic is considered as solids that mainly adsorb or absorb water from its surrounding environment.

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Deliquescent materials usually absorb a relatively high amount of water vapor. In contrast, the water is not absorbed by efflorescent materials, whereas the water is either adsorb or absorb by hygroscopic substances. Deliquescent substances are also known as desiccants; on the contrary, efflorescent is present as crystals, while the hygroscopic materials are also known as humectants.

The deliquescent materials contain a relatively very high attraction towards the water; at the same time, the efflorescent materials consist of a considerable attraction towards the water; on the other hand, the hygroscopic materials contain a little affinity towards water. Thorugh the absorption of water vapor, the deliquescent substances produce an aqueous solution; on the contrary, a solution is not provided by efflorescent materials; on the flip side, a solution is not produced by hygroscopic substances, but they absorb water vapor.

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The examples of deliquescent substances are magnesium chloride, potassium hydroxide, iron chloride, sodium hydroxide, phosphorus oxide, and calcium chloride, while on its flip side, the example of efflorescence in which a compound go through this is washing soda. At the same time, the cases of hygroscopic substances are copper oxide, sodium trioxonitrate, and quick lime (CaO).

Comparison Chart

DeliquescentEfflorescentHygroscopic
The process in which a material absorbs water from the surrounding water until it completely absorbs water and produces a liquid solution is known as deliquescent.The process in which salt is present in a porous material is firstly dissolved by absorbed water and then transferred to the porous surface where forms precipitation out of the solution is known as efflorescent.The process in which the substance absorbs water from its surrounding environment and absorb enough to clomp together is known as hygroscopic.
Considered As
They are considered as solids that mostly absorb moistness from the surrounding until they dissolve completely in the absorbed water and produce the solution.They are considered as solids that undergo natural loss of water from hydrated salts.They are considered as solids that mainly adsorb or absorb water from its surrounding environment.
Water Vapor Absorption
Normally it absorbs relatively a high amount of water vapor.The water is not absorbed.The water is either adsorb or absorb.
Other Names
Also known as desiccants.Present as crystals.Also known as humectants.
Affinity for Water
It contains a relatively very high attraction towards the water.Consists of a considerable attraction towards the water.It includes a little affinity towards water.
Formation of a Solution
Thorugh the absorption of water vapor, it produces an aqueous solution.A solution is not produced.A solution is not created, but they absorb water vapor.
Examples
The examples are magnesium chloride, potassium hydroxide, iron chloride, sodium hydroxide, phosphorus oxide, and calcium chlorideThe example in which a compound go through this is washing sodaThe illustrations are copper oxide, sodium trioxonitrate, and quick lime (CaO)
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What is Deliquescent?

The solid matter which can easily get liquefied through absorbing the water vapor, which in the result is the production of an aqueous solution, is known as the process of deliquescence. The deliquescent substances consist of a very high affinity towards water.

Depending on the location of the place and the time of day, the atmosphere contains about 0-4% of water vapor. However, there are present many other gases and vapors also present in the atmosphere; the water vapor consists of pressure known as partial pressure. The examples of deliquescent substances are magnesium chloride, potassium hydroxide, iron chloride, sodium hydroxide, phosphorus oxide, and calcium chloride.

What is Efflorescent?

The solids which go through the natural water loss from specific hydrated salts (inorganic salts having water molecules mixed in a defined ratio). These salts can lose molecules of water when exposed to the outside are known as efflorescent substances, and this whole process is known as efflorescence.

The process of efflorescent happens when the liquid-vapor pressure of the hydrate becomes higher than the partial pressure of the water vapors ordinarily present in the air. The examples are, 10H2O, FeSO4, Na2CO3, Na2SO4, and 10H2O, while the most common example of efflorescence is aeration of cement. Washing soda is also the example that goes through efflorescence in which its molecules usually lose nine of its units out of its total ten crystallized water molecules when taken into the open air.

What is Hygroscopic?

The solids which absorb moisture from the surrounding environment but would not produce a solution is known as hygroscopic substance, and they consume enough to form a clamp. The process of Hygroscopy usually results in the change of physical features of the hygroscopic materials, which includes boiling, color, viscosity, point, etc.

Salts are the most common examples of hygroscopic substances. There are present some other hygroscopic compounds as well, which include silica gel, germinating seeds, honey, etc. Examples of hygroscopic materials are copper oxide, sodium trioxonitrate, zinc chloride, sodium chloride, quick lime (CaO), and sodium hydroxide.

Key Differences

  1. Desiccants are known as the other name of deliquescent substances; on the other hand, the efflorescent contents are generally present in surroundings as crystals; on the flip side, humectants are known as the second name for hygroscopic.
  2. Deliquescent substances contain a very high affinity for water; in contrast, a considerable amount of affinity for water is present by efflorescent materials; on the flip side, a very less amount of affinity is contained by hygroscopic substances.
  3. In deliquescent materials, a solution is formed through the absorption of water; at the same time, in efflorescent materials, a solution is not established; on the contrary, in hygroscopic materials, a solution is not formed, but they absorb water vapor.
  4. Deliquescent substances can absorb a high amount of water vapor; on the contrary, water is not entirely absorbed by efflorescent elements; on the flip side, the water may be absorbed or adsorbed by hygroscopic substances.
  5. The deliquescent substances are referred to as solids which absorb water from the surrounding environment and forms a liquid solution. On the flip side, the efflorescent materials are regarded as solids that go through spontaneous water loss from some hydrated salts; at the same time, the hygroscopic substances are referred to as solids that absorb or adsorb water and form a clump.

Conclusion

The above discussion concludes that the deliquescent materials produce the liquid solution through the absorption of water; in contrast, the efflorescent substances do not absorb water and occurs a spontaneous loss of water. On the other hand, the hygroscopic materials absorb the water from its surrounding environment and consume enough to clomp together.

Harlon Moss

Harlon currently works as a quality moderator and content writer for Difference Wiki. He graduated from the University of California in 2010 with a degree in Computer Science. Follow him on Twitter @HarlonMoss

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