Sodium sulfide is a water soluble and colorless salt that gives strong alkaline solutions. Sodium sulfide with its hydrates emits hydrogen sulfide smelling like rotten eggs, when exposed to moist air. Some of the commonly available grades of sodium sulfide include 60% of Na2S, by weight, which have a yellow appearance due to presence of polysulfides. These grades are marketed worldwide as sodium sulfide flakes whose solutions are regarded as colorless despite being yellow in color. Sodium sulfide is manufactured industrially by the reduction sodium sulfate with carbon, in the form of coal. The anhydrous salt is prepared in the presence of anhydrous ammonia by the reduction of sulfur with sodium. Sodium sulfide is also manufactured by other methods such as reduction of sodium sulfate by reducing agents which are gaseous in nature, absorption of hydrogen sulfide by sodium hydroxide, and the electrolytic method among others. Out of these methods, reduction of sodium sulfate has been the most common method to obtain sodium sulfate. In most of the industrial wastes, sodium sulfate is manufactured in large quantities. Sodium sulfate as a byproduct is made during the manufacturing of sodium dichromate, and is considered as a low grade sodium sulfate consequently having a limited distribution. Owing to this, the sodium sulfate produced is converted to sodium sulfide on account of its inability of its other uses as it contains highly toxic hexavalent chromium. This method of obtaining sodium sulfide by the reduction of sodium sulfate has been implemented by various economies.
The global market for sodium sulfide has been witnessing a significant increase owing to growing demand from its application industries. It is widely consumed in various applications such as pulp & paper, glass production, printing, textiles, and detergents among others. Noticeable growth has been witnessed from detergent applications, particularly in developing as well as emerging economies such as China and India. However, pulp & paper application have declined lately owing to product substitution as well as technological changes in addition to growing environmental legislation. Other prominent applications of sodium sulfide include metal precipitant, photographic applications, oxygen scavenger agent in water treatment applications, production of rubber dyes, rubber chemicals and other compounds, food preservatives and oil recovery among others.
Emerging regions such as Asia Pacific accounted for the largest market share in the sodium sulfide market in 2013, followed by Europe and North America. Future market growth is expected to from emerging economies such as Brazil, India, China and Argentina. In addition, China holds the world’s largest mirabilite reserves and has been focusing on expanding production capacities of sodium sulfide in order the meet the global demand. The country is also anticipated to become the largest supplier of sodium sulfide for global consumption as production costs are relatively lower than other parts of the world. Demand for sodium sulfide is also expected to rise on a global scale on account of increasing number of exports to Latin American regions such as South and Central America for the purpose of satisfying the increasing demand for powdered detergents.
Allchem Group Co. Ltd., BASF SE, Jiujiang Huirong Trade Co., Ltd., Nafine Group International Co., and Sigma Aldrich Corporation are some of key player in the sodium sulfide industry dominating the market.
Key geographies evaluated in this report are:
Key features of this report