What is sulfur used for?


Quick Answer

Sulfur is used as a fungicide, an insecticide and a fumigant in the production of inorganic chemicals, glass, matches, fireworks and black gunpowder; the manufacture of fertilizers; the creation of steel; and the creation and vulcanization of rubber. Sulfur is also used in cement, explosives, adhesives and animal feed and in the production of soil amendments, slat blocks and petroleum.

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Full Answer

Powdered sulfur is an important component in dyes and in the production of agrichemicals. It is also required in wastewater processing and mineral extraction. This element forms part of the ingredients used to make lotions, skin cream and bar soaps. It is also found in ointments used to treat certain skin diseases.

Sulfur is used to create sulfur compounds, such as sulfuric acid, sulfur dioxide, sodium bisulfate, carbon disulfide and hydrogen sulfide. Sulfur dioxide is used as a disinfectant, bleaching agent and refrigerant. Hydrogen sulfide, thionyl chloride and sulfur trioxide are used as reagents in chemistry. Sodium bisulfate is used in the manufacture of paper, and carbon disulfide is an organic solvent.

Sulfur is found in many natural resources, such as mineral springs, magnesium sulfate, water, zinc blende, iron pyrites, gypsum and barite. This element is also found in underground deposits and volcanic regions. Traces of sulfur can be found in common enzymes. Amino acids found in plants and animals, such as taurine, mocysteine, cysteine and methionine, also contain sulfur.

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