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Zirconates

Zirconium hydroxide, if such a compound can be said to exist, is an amphoteric hydroxide forming salts both with strong acids and strong bases. Zirconates of the alkali and other metals are known, but they are produced by fusion rather than in solution; precipitated zirconia adsorbs a certain amount of alkali added in excess, but does not definitely combine with it.

Sodium Metazirconate, Na2ZrO3, is formed when zirconia and sodium carbonate are fused together in equivalent proportions. It is a crystalline mass which is decomposed by water. By using excess of sodium carbonate and heating the mixture to whiteness the ortho- zirconate Na4ZrO4 is produced. Lithium forms the zirconates Li2ZrO3 and Li2Zr2O5, and calcium, strontium, barium, and magnesium the metazirconates M''ZrO3.

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