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Lithium hydroxide
Lithium hydroxide
IUPAC name
Other names Lithine
CAS number 1310-65-2 Yes check.svgY,
1310-66-3 (monohydrate)
PubChem 3939
UN number 2680
RTECS number OJ6307070
Molecular formula LiOH
Molar mass 23.95 g/mol
Appearance hygroscopic white solid
Density 1.46 g/cm3 (anhydrous)
1.51 g/cm3 (monohydrate)
Melting point

462 °C

Boiling point

924 °C decomp.

Solubility in water anhydrous:
12.8 g/100 mL (20 °C)
12.5 g/100 mL (25 °C)
17.5 g/100 mL (100 °C)
22.3 g/100 mL (10 °C)
26.8 g/100 mL (100 °C) [1]
Refractive index (nD) 1.464 (anhydrous)
1.460 (monohydrate)
Std enthalpy of
-20.36 kJ/g
Specific heat capacity, C 2.071 J/g K
ICSC 0914 (monohydrate)
EU Index Not listed
Main hazards Corrosive
NFPA 704
NFPA 704.svg
Flash point Non-flammable
Related compounds
Other anions Lithium amide
Other cations Sodium hydroxide
Potassium hydroxide
Rubidium hydroxide
Caesium hydroxide
Related compounds Lithium oxide
 Yes check.svgY (what is this?)  (verify)
Except where noted otherwise, data are given for materials in their standard state (at 25 °C, 100 kPa)
Infobox references

Lithium hydroxide (LiOH) is a corrosive alkali hydroxide. It is a white hygroscopic crystalline material. It is soluble in water, and slightly soluble in ethanol. It is available commercially in anhydrous form, or as the monohydrate.



Lithium hydroxide is used in carbon dioxide scrubbers for purification of gases and air. It is used as a heat transfer medium, as a storage-battery electrolyte, and as a catalyst for polymerization. It is also used in ceramics, manufacturing other lithium compounds, and esterification specially for lithium stearate (which is used as a general purpose lubricating grease due to its high resistance to water and is useful at both high and low temperatures). Lithium hydroxide (isotopically enriched in lithium-7) is used to alkalize the reactor coolant in pressurized water reactors for corrosion control.


Lithium hydroxide can be produced by dissolving lithium or lithium oxide in water. The reaction is as follows:

2 Li + 2 H2O → 2 LiOH + H2
Li2O + H2O → 2 LiOH

LiOH(aq) is a strong base.

Because lithium reacts rapidly (but not violently) with water, lithium batteries should be kept away from water.

Industrially, lithium hydroxide is produced in a metathesis reaction between lithium carbonate and calcium hydroxide:

Li2CO3 + Ca(OH)2 → 2LiOH + CaCO3


Lithium hydroxide is used in breathing gas purification systems for spacecraft (Lithium hydroxide canisters in the LM and CM (after modification) were lifelines for the Apollo 13 astronauts), submarines, and rebreathers to remove carbon dioxide from exhaled gas by producing lithium carbonate and water:[2]

2 LiOH·H2O + CO2 → Li2CO3 + 3 H2O


2LiOH + CO2 → Li2CO3 + H2O

The latter, anhydrous hydroxide is preferred for its lower mass and lesser water production for respirator systems in spacecraft. 1 gram of anhydrous lithium hydroxide can remove 450 cm3 of carbon dioxide gas. The monohydrate loses its water at 100-110 °C.

LiOH(aq) + HF → LiF + H2O.

LiF shows basic nature, so it changes the red litmus paper into blue.

See also


  1. ^ Pradyot Patnaik. Handbook of Inorganic Chemicals. McGraw-Hill, 2002, ISBN 0070494398
  2. ^ Jaunsen, JR (1989). "The Behavior and Capabilities of Lithium Hydroxide Carbon Dioxide Scrubbers in a Deep Sea Environment". US Naval Academy Technical Report USNA-TSPR-157. Retrieved 2008-06-17.  

External links


Simple English

Lithium hydroxide

Lithium hydroxide is a chemical compound. Its chemical formula is LiOH. It contains lithium and hydroxide ions.



Lithium hydroxide is a white solid. It can be anhydrous (without extra water molecules attached) or hydrated (water added to it). It dissolves in water to make a basic solution. It reacts with acids to make lithium salts.


Lithium hydroxide is made by reacting lithium carbonate with calcium hydroxide.[1] A calcium carbonate solid is made and a lithium hydroxide solution is left behind. It can also be made by reacting lithium with water or by reacting lithium oxide with water.


It is used in spaceships to absorb carbon dioxide. It reacts with carbon dioxide to make lithium carbonate. This prevents people from suffocating in a spaceship. Lithium hydroxide is used to make lithium greases. They are resistant to water and can be used in high or low temperatures. It is used to transfer heat. It can be used in electrolytes. It is also used to prevent corrosion in some nuclear reactors. It can be used to glaze ceramics and make cement.


Lithium hydroxide is corrosive, like the other alkali metal hydroxides. It is also a little toxic because it has lithium in it. It can burn skin.


  1. Ulrich Wietelmann, Richard J. Bauer "Lithium and Lithium Compounds" in Ullmann's Encyclopedia of Industrial Chemistry 2005, Wiley-VCH: Weinheim. doi:10.1002/14356007.a15_393

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