It possesses a strong ammoniacal smell, and on digestion with alcohol the carbamate is dissolved and a residue of ammonium bicarbonate is left; a similar decomposition taking place when the sesquicarbonate is exposed to air.
Ammonia gas passed into a strong aqueous solution of the sesquicarbonate converts it into normal ammonium carbonate, (NH 4) 2 CO 3, which can be obtained in the crystalline condition from a solution prepared at about 30° C. This compound on exposure to air gives off ammonia and passes back to ammonium bicarbonate.
The soda in all of these is present as " sesquicarbonate," in reality 4/3 carbonate: NaHC03ï¿½Na2C03 H 2 O, and is always mixed with large quantities of chloride and sulphate, which makes its extraction more difficult than would appear from the outset.
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