Thiosulfates are a type of oxyanion of sulfur, meaning they consist of a sulfate ion with one oxygen ion. These compounds can be produced by natural means, but are also commonly chemically synthesized. The thiosulfate class of chemicals is useful for a wide variety of agricultural, commercial, and industrial applications, so let’s take a look at how thiosulfates are used in this blog from Bisley. 

1. Fertiliser

Thiosulfates serve as a valuable liquid source of nitrogen and sulfur, crucial for the growth of various crops. They offer several advantages, including compatibility with most liquid NPK sources, quicker oxidation compared to elemental sources, and higher analysis compared to other liquid sulfur sources. Thiosulfates are available in both soluble powder and solution forms. Recent studies indicate additional indirect benefits such as enhanced availability of micronutrients, inhibition of soil urease and nitrification processes, and improved availability of phosphorus fertilizers.

 2. Water Dechlorination 

Sodium thiosulfate is a powerful dechlorinator, meaning that it inactivates bleaching agents in water, such as chlorine bleach. This makes it very useful in the papermaking industry, where it’s often added to batches of paper once the desired brightness has been achieved.

3. Silver Ore Processing & Smelting 

Thiosulfates can be used in the processing of silver ore, especially from waste ore and tailings. This is a viable alternative to the highly-toxic “cyanidation” process which is frequently used to recover precious metals like silver from ore.

Thiosulfate has the ability to convert silver compounds into silver complexes that are soluble and easier to process, enhancing overall output and yield in silver mining operations. 

4. Traditional Film Photography 

Sodium thiosulfate, in particular, is used as a photographic “fixer” that’s used to fix black and white negatives after the initial developing stage. It helps stabilize the image, removes the remaining silver halide, and renders the negative insensitive to future light exposure. When used for this purpose, sodium thiosulfate is often known as “hypo.” 

Ammonium thiosulfate is more commonly used by traditional black and white photographers today, however, as it fixes images 3-4 times faster compared to sodium thiosulfate.

5. Leather Production 

Thiosulfates like sodium thiosulfate are often used in tanning goat skins for the manufacture of glace kid leather, and for creating calfskin leathers. Together with other chemicals like potassium/sodium dichromate, hydrochloric acid, and sulfuric acid, sodium thiosulfate helps strengthen, dry, and preserve these leather products. 

This is sometimes referred to as the “chrome tanning” method, because small amounts of chromium sulfate are also typically used in the process of tanning and curing the leather. 

Contact Bisley For High-Quality Thiosulfates & Get Everything You Need 

Beyond these uses, thiosulfates from Bisley have a number of other industrial, agricultural, and commercial uses. We offer consistent quality and reliable shipments for commercial and industrial customers worldwide. And with wholesale quantities and prices, we guarantee that we’ll have the chemicals you need at a great price. So don’t wait. If you’re interested in what we have to offer, contact us today.