STASSFURT, a town of Germany, in the Prussian province of Saxony, and one of the chief seats of the German salt-producing industry, situated on both sides of the Bode, 20 m.
Besides the rock-salt, which is excavated by blasting, the saline deposits of Stassfurt yield a considerable quantity of deliquescent salts and other saline products, which have encouraged the foundation of numerous chemical factories in the town and in the neighbouring village of Leopoldshall, which lies in Anhalt territory.
See Precht, Salzindustrie von Stassfurt and Umgebung (Stassfurt, 1891); and Westphal, Geschichte des koniglichen Salzwerks zu Stassfurt (Berlin, 1901).
This is generally effected by adding the calculated amount of potassium chloride (of which immense quantities are obtained as a by-product in the Stassfurt salt industry) dissolved in hot water to a saturated boiling solution of sodium nitrate; the common salt, which separates on boiling down the solution, is removed from the hot solution, and on cooling the potassium nitrate crystallizes out and is separated and dried.
Hydrated sulphates occur at several localities in the province of Madrid and in other provinces of Spain, and at Miihlingen in Aargau, and copious deposits of glauberite, the double sulphate of sodium and calcium, are met with in the salt-mines of Villarrubia in Spain, at Stassfurt, and in the province of Tarapaca, Chile, &c. A native nitrate of soda is obtained in great abundance in the district of Atacama and the province of Tarapaca, and is imported into Europe in enormous quantities as cubic nitre for the preparation of saltpetre.
In the oceans alone there are estimated to be 1141 X 10 12 tons of sulphate, K 2 SO 4, but this inexhaustible store is not much drawn upon; and the "salt gardens" on the coast of France lost their industrial importance as potash-producers since the deposits at Stassfurt in Germany have come to be worked.
These potassium minerals are not confined to Stassfurt; larger quantities of sylvine and kainite are met with in the salt mines of Kalusz in the eastern Carpathian Mountains.
The Stassfurt minerals owe their industrial importance to their solubility in water and consequent ready amenability to chemical operations.
It is produced in immense quantities at Stassfurt from the so-called "Abraumsalze."
Most of the carbonate which now occurs in commerce is made from the chloride of the Stassfurt beds by an adaptation of the "Leblanc process" for the conversion of common salt into soda ash (see Alkali Manufacture).
It was obtained as a by-product in many chemical reactions, and subsequently used to be extracted from kainite, one of the Stassfurt minerals, but the process is now given up because the salt can be produced cheaply enough from the chloride by decomposing it with sulphuric acid and calcining the residue.
It also occurs in nature in fibrous excrescences, constituting the mineral epsomite or hair-salt; and as compact masses (reichardite), as in the Stassfurt mines.
Hydrogen is found in the free state in some volcanic gases, in fumaroles, in the carnallite of the Stassfurt potash mines (H.
In his researches on the bleaching compounds of chlorine he was the first to advance the view that bleaching-powder is a double compound of calcium chloride and hypochlorite; and he devoted much time to the problem of economically obtaining soda and potash from seawater, though here his efforts were nullified by the discovery of the much richer sources of supply afforded by the Stassfurt deposits.
There is also deposited a double magnesium and potassium chloride, similar to the carnallite of Stassfurt, and finally the mother-liquor, which has now again risen to specific gravity 1.3374, contains only pure magnesium chloride.
The Permian system (Zechstein) yields the great salt-deposits worked at Stassfurt and at Halle in Prussian Saxony.
The Stassfurt deposits are of special importance for the sake of the associated salts of potassium and magnesium, such as carnallite and kainite.
Its chief commercial sources are the salt deposits at Stassfurt in Prussian Saxony, in which magnesium bromide is found associated with various chlorides, and the brines of Michigan, Ohio, Pennsylvania and West Virginia, U.S.A.; small quantities are obtained from the mother liquors of Chile saltpetre and kelp. In combination with silver it is found as the mineral bromargyrite (bromite).
The chief centres of the bromine industry are Stassfurt and the central district of Michigan.