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In
chemistry Chemistry is the study of the properties and behavior of . It is a that covers the that make up matter to the composed of s, s and s: their composition, structure, properties, behavior and the changes they undergo during a with other . ...

chemistry
, a phosphate is an
anion An ion () is an atom An atom is the smallest unit of ordinary matter In classical physics and general chemistry, matter is any substance that has mass and takes up space by having volume. All everyday objects that can be touched are u ...
,
salt Salt is a mineral In geology and mineralogy, a mineral or mineral species is, broadly speaking, a solid chemical compound with a fairly well-defined chemical composition and a specific crystal structure that occurs naturally in pure fo ...
,
functional group In organic chemistry, a functional group is a substituent or moiety (chemistry), moiety in a molecule that causes the molecule's characteristic chemical reactions. The same functional group will undergo the same or similar chemical reactions re ...
or
ester An ester is a derived from an (organic or inorganic) in which at least one –OH group is replaced by an –O– () group, as in the substitution reaction of a and an . s are s of ; they are important in biology, being one of the main classe ...

ester
derived from a
phosphoric acid Phosphoric acid, also known as orthophosphoric acid or phosphoric(V) acid, is a weak acid with the chemical formula . The pure compound is a colorless solid. All three hydrogens are acidic to varying degrees and can be lost from the molecule a ...
. It most commonly means orthophosphate, a derivative of
orthophosphoric acid
orthophosphoric acid
. The phosphate or orthophosphate ion is derived from phosphoric acid by the removal of three
proton A proton is a subatomic particle, symbol or , with a positive electric charge of +1''e'' elementary charge and a mass slightly less than that of a neutron. Protons and neutrons, each with masses of approximately one atomic mass unit, are collecti ...

proton
s . Removal of one or two protons gives the dihydrogen phosphate ion and the hydrogen phosphate ion ion, respectively. These names are also used for salts of those anions, such as
ammonium dihydrogen phosphate Ammonium dihydrogen phosphate (ADP), also known as monoammonium phosphate (MAP) is a chemical compound A chemical compound is a chemical substance composed of many identical molecules (or molecular entity, molecular entities) composed of atoms f ...

ammonium dihydrogen phosphate
and
trisodium phosphate Trisodium phosphate (TSP) is the inorganic compound In chemistry Chemistry is the scientific discipline involved with Chemical element, elements and chemical compound, compounds composed of atoms, molecules and ions: their composition, str ...

trisodium phosphate
. File:3-phosphoric-acid-3D-balls.png,
Phosphoric
acid File:2-dihydrogenphosphate-3D-balls.png,
Dihydrogen
phosphate File:1-hydrogenphosphate-3D-balls.png,
Hydrogen
phosphate File:0-phosphate-3D-balls.png,
Phosphate
In
organic chemistry Organic chemistry is a branch of chemistry Chemistry is the study of the properties and behavior of . It is a that covers the that make up matter to the composed of s, s and s: their composition, structure, properties, behavior and th ...
, phosphate or orthophosphate is an
organophosphate Organophosphates (also known as phosphate esters, or OPEs) are a class of organophosphorus compound Organophosphorus compounds are organic compound In , organic compounds are generally any s that contain - . Due to carbon's ability to (f ...

organophosphate
, an ester of orthophosphoric acid of the form where one or more hydrogen atoms are replaced by
organic Organic may refer to: * Organic, of or relating to an organism, a living entity * Organic, of or relating to an anatomical organ (anatomy), organ Chemistry * Organic matter, matter that has come from a once-living organism, is capable of decay or ...
groups. An example is
trimethyl phosphate Trimethyl phosphate is the trimethyl ester An ester is a chemical compound derived from an acid (organic or inorganic) in which at least one –OH hydroxyl group is replaced by an –O– alkyl (alkoxy) group, as in the substitution reaction of ...
, . The term also refers to the
trivalent In chemistry Chemistry is the study of the properties and behavior of . It is a that covers the that make up matter to the composed of s, s and s: their composition, structure, properties, behavior and the changes they undergo durin ...
functional group in such esters. Orthophosphates are especially important among the various
phosphates In chemistry Chemistry is the scientific discipline involved with Chemical element, elements and chemical compound, compounds composed of atoms, molecules and ions: their composition, structure, properties, behavior and the changes they un ...
because of their key roles in
biochemistry Biochemistry or biological chemistry, is the study of chemical process In a scientific Science () is a systematic enterprise that Scientific method, builds and organizes knowledge in the form of Testability, testable explanations and pr ...

biochemistry
,
biogeochemistry Biogeochemistry is the scientific discipline that involves the study of the chemical, physical, geological, and biological Biology is the natural science Natural science is a branch of science Science (from the Latin word ''scie ...
, and
ecology Ecology (from el, οἶκος, "house" and el, -λογία, label=none, "study of") is the study of the relationships between living organisms, including humans, and their physical environment. Ecology considers organisms In biol ...
, and their economic importance for
agriculture Agriculture is the science, art and practice of cultivating plants and livestock. Agriculture was the key development in the rise of sedentary Image:Family watching television 1958.jpg, Exercise trends, Increases in sedentary behaviors su ...

agriculture
and industry. The addition and removal of phosphate groups (
phosphorylation In chemistry Chemistry is the study of the properties and behavior of . It is a that covers the that make up matter to the composed of s, s and s: their composition, structure, properties, behavior and the changes they undergo during ...

phosphorylation
and
dephosphorylation In biochemistry Biochemistry or biological chemistry, is the study of chemical process In a scientific Science (from the Latin Latin (, or , ) is a classical language belonging to the Italic languages, Italic branch of the Indo-Euro ...
) are key steps in cell
metabolism Metabolism (, from el, μεταβολή ''metabolē'', "change") is the set of life Life is a characteristic that distinguishes physical entities A bubble of exhaled gas in water In common usage and classical mechanics, a phys ...

metabolism
. Orthophosphates can
condense Condensation is the change of the state of matter In physics Physics is the natural science that studies matter, its Elementary particle, fundamental constituents, its Motion (physics), motion and behavior through Spacetime, space ...
to form
pyrophosphate In chemistry, pyrophosphates are phosphorus oxyanions that contain two phosphorus atoms in a P–O–P linkage. A number of pyrophosphate salts exist, such as disodium pyrophosphate (Na2H2P2O7) and tetrasodium pyrophosphate (Na4P2O7), among others ...
s.


Chemical properties

The phosphate ion has a
molar mass In , the molar mass of a is defined as the of a sample of that compound divided by the in that sample, measured in . The molar mass is a bulk, not molecular, property of a substance. The molar mass is an ''average'' of many instances of the co ...
of 94.97 g/mol, and consists of a central
phosphorus Phosphorus is a chemical element In chemistry, an element is a pure Chemical substance, substance consisting only of atoms that all have the same numbers of protons in their atomic nucleus, nuclei. Unlike chemical compounds, chemical el ...

phosphorus
atom surrounded by four
oxygen Oxygen is the chemical element Image:Simple Periodic Table Chart-blocks.svg, 400px, Periodic table, The periodic table of the chemical elements In chemistry, an element is a pure substance consisting only of atoms that all have the same ...

oxygen
atoms in a
tetrahedral In , a tetrahedron (plural: tetrahedra or tetrahedrons), also known as a triangular , is a composed of four , six straight , and four . The tetrahedron is the simplest of all the ordinary and the only one that has fewer than 5 faces. The t ...

tetrahedral
arrangement. It is the
conjugate base A conjugate acid, within the Brønsted–Lowry acid–base theory The Brønsted–Lowry theory (also called proton theory of acids and bases) is an acid–base reaction An acid–base reaction is a chemical reaction A chemical reactio ...
of the hydrogen phosphate ion , which in turn is the conjugate base of the dihydrogen phosphate ion , which in turn is the conjugate base of
orthophosphoric acid
orthophosphoric acid
, . Many phosphates are
soluble In chemistry Chemistry is the scientific Science () is a systematic enterprise that builds and organizes knowledge Knowledge is a familiarity or awareness, of someone or something, such as facts A fact is an occurrence i ...

soluble
in
water Water (chemical formula H2O) is an Inorganic compound, inorganic, transparent, tasteless, odorless, and Color of water, nearly colorless chemical substance, which is the main constituent of Earth's hydrosphere and the fluids of all known li ...

water
at
standard temperature and pressure Standard temperature and pressure (STP) are standard Standard may refer to: Flags * Colours, standards and guidons * Standard (flag), a type of flag used for personal identification Norm, convention or requirement * Standard (metrology), a ...
. The sodium, potassium,
rubidium Rubidium is the chemical element upright=1.0, 500px, The chemical elements ordered by link=Periodic table In chemistry Chemistry is the science, scientific study of the properties and behavior of matter. It is a natural science th ...

rubidium
,
caesium Caesium (IUPAC spelling) (American and British English spelling differences, also spelled cesium in American English) is a chemical element with the Symbol (chemistry), symbol Cs and atomic number 55. It is a soft, silvery-golden alkal ...

caesium
, and ammonium phosphates are all water-soluble. Most other phosphates are only slightly soluble or are insoluble in water. As a rule, the hydrogen and dihydrogen phosphates are slightly more soluble than the corresponding phosphates.


Equilibria in solution

In water solution, orthophosphoric acid and its three derived anions coexist according to the dissociation and recombination equilibria below Values are at 25°C and 0 ionic strength. The p''K''''a'' values are the
pH
pH
values where the concentration of each species is equal to that of its
conjugate base A conjugate acid, within the Brønsted–Lowry acid–base theory The Brønsted–Lowry theory (also called proton theory of acids and bases) is an acid–base reaction An acid–base reaction is a chemical reaction A chemical reactio ...
s. At pH 1 or lower, the phosphoric acid is practically undissociated. Around pH 4.7 (mid-way between the first two p''K''''a'' values) the dihydrogen phosphate ion, , is practically the only species present. Around pH 9.8 (mid-way between the second and third p''K''''a'' values) the monohydrogen phosphate ion, , is the only species present. At pH 13 or higher, the acid is completely dissociated as the phosphate ion, . This means that salts of the mono- and di-phosphate ions can be selectively crystallised from aqueous solution by setting the pH value to either 4.7 or 9.8. In effect, , and behave as separate
weak acid Acid strength is the tendency of an acid An acid is a molecule or ion capable of donating a proton (hydrogen ion H+) (a Brønsted–Lowry acid–base theory, Brønsted–Lowry acid), or, alternatively, capable of forming a covalent bond wi ...

weak acid
s because the successive p''K''''a'' differ by more than 4. Phosphate can form many
polymer A polymer (; Greek ''poly- Poly, from the Greek :wikt:πολύς, πολύς meaning "many" or "much", may refer to: Businesses * China Poly Group Corporation, a Chinese business group, and its subsidiaries: ** Poly Property, a Hong Kong inc ...

polymer
ic ions such as
pyrophosphate In chemistry, pyrophosphates are phosphorus oxyanions that contain two phosphorus atoms in a P–O–P linkage. A number of pyrophosphate salts exist, such as disodium pyrophosphate (Na2H2P2O7) and tetrasodium pyrophosphate (Na4P2O7), among others ...
, , and triphosphate, . The various
metaphosphate A metaphosphate ion is an oxyanionAn oxyanion, or oxoanion, is an ion with the generic formula (where A represents a chemical element Image:Simple Periodic Table Chart-blocks.svg, 400px, Periodic table, The periodic table of the chemical eleme ...
ions (which are usually long linear polymers) have an empirical formula of and are found in many compounds.


Biochemistry of phosphates

In
biological system A biological system is a complex biological network, network which connects several biologically relevant entities. Biological organization spans several scales and are determined based different structures depending on what the system is. Examples ...
s, phosphorus can be found as free phosphate anions in solution (inorganic phosphate) or bound to organic molecules as various
organophosphate Organophosphates (also known as phosphate esters, or OPEs) are a class of organophosphorus compound Organophosphorus compounds are organic compound In , organic compounds are generally any s that contain - . Due to carbon's ability to (f ...

organophosphate
s. Inorganic phosphate is generally denoted Pi and at physiological (homeostatic)
pH
pH
primarily consists of a mixture of and ions. At a neutral pH, as in the
cytosol The cytosol, also known as cytoplasmic matrix or groundplasm, is one of the liquids found inside cells Cell most often refers to: * Cell (biology), the functional basic unit of life Cell may also refer to: Closed spaces * Monastic cell, a s ...
(pH = 7.0), the concentrations of the orthophoshoric acid and its three anions have the ratios : / ≈ 7.5 × 104 : / ≈ 0.62 : / ≈ 2.14 × 10−6 Thus, only and ions are present in significant amounts in the cytosol (62% , 38% ). In extracellular fluid (pH = 7.4), this proportion is inverted (61% , 39% ). Inorganic phosphate can be present also as of
pyrophosphate In chemistry, pyrophosphates are phosphorus oxyanions that contain two phosphorus atoms in a P–O–P linkage. A number of pyrophosphate salts exist, such as disodium pyrophosphate (Na2H2P2O7) and tetrasodium pyrophosphate (Na4P2O7), among others ...
anions , which can give orthophosphate by
hydrolysis Hydrolysis (; ) is any chemical reaction in which a molecule of water breaks one or more chemical bonds. The term is used broadly for substitution Substitution may refer to: Arts and media *Chord substitution, in music, swapping one chord fo ...

hydrolysis
: : + H2O 2 Organic phosphates are commonly found in the form of esters as
nucleotide Nucleotides are organic molecules , CH4; is among the simplest organic compounds. In chemistry, organic compounds are generally any chemical compounds that contain carbon-hydrogen chemical bond, bonds. Due to carbon's ability to Catenation, ...

nucleotide
s (e.g. AMP,
ADP
ADP
, and
ATP ATP may refer to: Companies and organizations * Association of Tennis Professionals * American Technical Publishers * ', a Danish pension * Armenia Tree Project * Association for Transpersonal Psychology * ATP architects engineers office * ATP ...

ATP
) and in
DNA Deoxyribonucleic acid (; DNA) is a molecule File:Pentacene on Ni(111) STM.jpg, A scanning tunneling microscopy image of pentacene molecules, which consist of linear chains of five carbon rings. A molecule is an electrically neutral gro ...

DNA
and
RNA Ribonucleic acid (RNA) is a polymer A polymer (; Greek ''wikt:poly-, poly-'', "many" + ''wikt:-mer, -mer'', "part") is a Chemical substance, substance or material consisting of very large molecules, or macromolecules, composed of many Re ...

RNA
. Free orthophosphate anions can be released by the hydrolysis of the phosphoanhydride bonds in ATP or ADP. These
phosphorylation In chemistry Chemistry is the study of the properties and behavior of . It is a that covers the that make up matter to the composed of s, s and s: their composition, structure, properties, behavior and the changes they undergo during ...

phosphorylation
and
dephosphorylation In biochemistry Biochemistry or biological chemistry, is the study of chemical process In a scientific Science (from the Latin Latin (, or , ) is a classical language belonging to the Italic languages, Italic branch of the Indo-Euro ...
reactions are the immediate storage and source of energy for many
metabolic Metabolism (, from el, μεταβολή ''metabolē'', "change") is the set of life Life is a characteristic that distinguishes physical entities that have biological processes, such as Cell signaling, signaling and self-sustaining ...

metabolic
processes. ATP and ADP are often referred to as high-energy phosphates, as are the phosphagens in muscle tissue. Similar reactions exist for the other nucleoside diphosphates and triphosphates.


Bones and teeth

An important occurrence of phosphates in biological systems is as the structural material of bone and teeth. These structures are made of crystalline
calcium phosphate Calcium phosphate is a family of materials and mineral In geology Geology (from the Ancient Greek γῆ, ''gē'' ("earth") and -λoγία, ''-logia'', ("study of", "discourse")) is an Earth science concerned with the solid Earth, the rock ...
in the form of
hydroxyapatite Hydroxyapatite, also called hydroxylapatite (HA), is a naturally occurring mineral In geology and mineralogy, a mineral or mineral species is, broadly speaking, a solid chemical compound with a fairly well-defined chemical composition and ...
. The hard dense enamel of mammalian teeth consists of fluoroapatite, a
hydroxy
hydroxy
calcium phosphate where some of the
hydroxyl A hydroxy or hydroxyl group is a functional group with the chemical formula -OH and composed of one oxygen Oxygen is the chemical element Image:Simple Periodic Table Chart-blocks.svg, 400px, Periodic table, The periodic table of the ...

hydroxyl
groups have been replaced by
fluoride Fluoride (). According to this source, is a possible pronunciation in British English. is an inorganic In chemistry Chemistry is the scientific discipline involved with Chemical element, elements and chemical compound, compounds compose ...
ions.


Medical and biological research uses

The medicinal type (salt) of phosphorus is phosphate. Some phosphates, which help cure many urinary tract infections, are used to make urine more acidic. To avoid the development of calcium stones in the urinary tract, some phosphates are used. For patients who are unable to get enough phosphorus in their daily diet, phosphates are used as dietary supplements, usually because of certain disorders or diseases. Injectable phosphates can only be handled by a health care provider.


Plant metabolism

Plants take up phosphorus through several pathways: the arbuscular mycorrhizal pathway and the direct uptake pathway.


Adverse health effects

Hyperphosphatemia, or high level of phosphates in
blood Blood is a body fluid Body fluids, bodily fluids, or biofluids are liquid A liquid is a nearly incompressible In fluid mechanics or more generally continuum mechanics, incompressible flow (isochoric process, isochoric flow) refers t ...

blood
, is associated with elevated
mortality Mortality is the state of being mortal, or susceptible to death (1906) Death is the permanent, Irreversible process, irreversible cessation of all biological process, biological functions that sustain a living organism. Brain death is some ...
in the general population. Hyperphosphatemia is generally caused by phosphate additives, that is phosphates that are added to food preparations, as phosphates that are naturally present in food are not completely absorbed by the
gastro-intestinal tract The gastrointestinal tract, (GI tract, GIT, digestive tract, digestion tract, alimentary canal) is the tract from the mouth to the anus The anus (from Latin Latin (, or , ) is a classical language belonging to the Italic languages, Ita ...
. Phosphates induce vascular
calcification Calcification is the accumulation of calcium Calcium is a chemical element with the Symbol (chemistry), symbol Ca and atomic number 20. As an alkaline earth metal, calcium is a reactive metal that forms a dark oxide-nitride layer when expose ...
, and a high concentration of phosphates in blood was found to be a predictor of
cardiovascular events Cardiovascular disease (CVD) is a class of diseases that involve the heart or blood vessels. CVD includes coronary artery diseases (CAD) such as angina pectoris, angina and myocardial infarction (commonly known as a heart attack). Other CVDs incl ...
. Phosphates are commonly used as additives in industrially processed food and
fast food Fast food is a type of Mass production, mass-produced food designed for commercial resale and with a strong priority placed on "speed of service" versus other relevant factors involved in food science, culinary science. Fast food was created a ...

fast food
. Fast food and ready-to-eat processed foods are the main contributors of the rising consumption of phosphate among the population. Phosphates additives are also commonly found in flavoured
soft drink A soft drink (see #Terminology, § Terminology for other names) is a drink that usually contains water (often Carbonated water, carbonated), a Sweetness, sweetener, and a natural and/or Artificial Flavoring, artificial flavoring. The sweetene ...

soft drink
s as well as certain
dairy products Dairy products or milk products are a type of food Food is any substance consumed to provide Nutrient, nutritional support for an organism. Food is usually of plant, animal or Fungus, fungal origin, and contains essential nutrients, such a ...
.


Production


Geological occurrence

Phosphates are the naturally occurring form of the element
phosphorus Phosphorus is a chemical element In chemistry, an element is a pure Chemical substance, substance consisting only of atoms that all have the same numbers of protons in their atomic nucleus, nuclei. Unlike chemical compounds, chemical el ...

phosphorus
, found in many
phosphate mineral Phosphate minerals contain the tetrahedrally coordinated phosphate In chemistry Chemistry is the scientific discipline involved with Chemical element, elements and chemical compound, compounds composed of atoms, molecules and ions: their ...
s. In mineralogy and geology, phosphate refers to a rock or ore containing phosphate ions. Inorganic phosphates are to obtain phosphorus for use in agriculture and industry. The largest global producer and exporter of phosphates is
Morocco ) , image_map = Morocco (orthographic projection, WS claimed).svg , map_caption = Location of Morocco in northwest Africa.Dark green: Undisputed territory of Morocco.Lighter green: Western Sahara, a United Nations lis ...

Morocco
. Within North America, the largest deposits lie in the
Bone Valley . The Bone Valley is a region of central Florida Florida (, ) is a U.S. state, state located in the Southeastern United States, Southeastern region of the United States. With a population of over 21million, Florida is the List of states and te ...
region of central
Florida Florida is a U.S. state, state located in the Southeastern United States, Southeastern region of the United States. Florida is bordered to the west by the Gulf of Mexico, to the northwest by Alabama, to the north by Georgia (U.S. state), Geor ...

Florida
, the Soda Springs region of southeastern
Idaho Idaho () is a state State may refer to: Arts, entertainment, and media Literature * ''State Magazine'', a monthly magazine published by the U.S. Department of State * The State (newspaper), ''The State'' (newspaper), a daily newspaper in ...

Idaho
, and the coast of
North Carolina North Carolina () is a state State may refer to: Arts, entertainment, and media Literature * ''State Magazine'', a monthly magazine published by the U.S. Department of State * The State (newspaper), ''The State'' (newspaper), a daily news ...

North Carolina
. Smaller deposits are located in
Montana Montana () is a state State may refer to: Arts, entertainment, and media Literature * ''State Magazine'', a monthly magazine published by the U.S. Department of State * The State (newspaper), ''The State'' (newspaper), a daily newspaper ...

Montana
,
Tennessee Tennessee (, ), officially the State of Tennessee, is a state State may refer to: Arts, entertainment, and media Literature * ''State Magazine'', a monthly magazine published by the U.S. Department of State * The State (newspaper), ''The S ...

Tennessee
,
Georgia Georgia usually refers to: * Georgia (country), a country in the Caucasus region of Eurasia * Georgia (U.S. state), one of the states of the United States of America Georgia may also refer to: Historical states and entities * Democratic Republ ...
, and
South Carolina South Carolina () is a state State may refer to: Arts, entertainment, and media Literature * ''State Magazine'', a monthly magazine published by the U.S. Department of State * The State (newspaper), ''The State'' (newspaper), a daily newspap ...

South Carolina
. The small island nation of
Nauru Nauru ( or ; na, Naoero), officially the Republic of Nauru ( na, Repubrikin Naoero) and formerly known as Pleasant Island, is an island country An island country or an island nation is a country A country is a distinct territory, t ...

Nauru
and its neighbor
Banaba Island BanabaThe correct spelling and etymology in Gilbertese should be ''Bwanaba'' but the Constitution of Kiribati writes Banaba. Because of the spelling in English or French, the name was very often written Paanapa or Paanopa, as it was in 1901 Act. ...

Banaba Island
, which used to have massive phosphate deposits of the best quality, have been mined excessively. Rock phosphate can also be found in Egypt, Israel, Palestine, Western Sahara,
Navassa Island Navassa Island (; french: l'île de la Navasse; also ''La Navasse'', ''La Navase'') is a small uninhabited island in the Caribbean Sea. Located northeast of Jamaica, south of Cuba, and west of Jérémie on the Tiburon Peninsula of Haiti, it is ...

Navassa Island
, Tunisia, Togo, and Jordan, countries that have large phosphate-mining industries. Phosphorite mines are primarily found in: * North America: United States, especially Florida, with lesser deposits in
North Carolina North Carolina () is a state State may refer to: Arts, entertainment, and media Literature * ''State Magazine'', a monthly magazine published by the U.S. Department of State * The State (newspaper), ''The State'' (newspaper), a daily news ...

North Carolina
,
Idaho Idaho () is a state State may refer to: Arts, entertainment, and media Literature * ''State Magazine'', a monthly magazine published by the U.S. Department of State * The State (newspaper), ''The State'' (newspaper), a daily newspaper in ...

Idaho
, and
Tennessee Tennessee (, ), officially the State of Tennessee, is a state State may refer to: Arts, entertainment, and media Literature * ''State Magazine'', a monthly magazine published by the U.S. Department of State * The State (newspaper), ''The S ...

Tennessee
* Africa:
Morocco ) , image_map = Morocco (orthographic projection, WS claimed).svg , map_caption = Location of Morocco in northwest Africa.Dark green: Undisputed territory of Morocco.Lighter green: Western Sahara, a United Nations lis ...

Morocco
,
Algeria ) , image_map = Algeria (centered orthographic projection).svg , map_caption = , image_map2 = , capital = Algiers , coordinates = , largest_city = capital , religion = , official_languages = , languages_type = Oth ...

Algeria
,
Egypt Egypt ( ar, مِصر, Miṣr), officially the Arab Republic of Egypt, is a transcontinental country This is a list of countries located on more than one continent A continent is one of several large landmasses. Generally identi ...

Egypt
,
Niger ) , official_languages = French , languages_type = National language A national language is a language A language is a structured system of communication used by humans, including speech (spoken language), gestures (Signed languag ...

Niger
,
Senegal Senegal (; french: link=no, Sénégal; Wolof language, Wolof: ''Senegaal''; Arabic language, Arabic: السنغال ''As-Sinighal''), officially the Republic of Senegal (french: link=no, République du Sénégal; Wolof language, Wolof: ''Réew ...

Senegal
,
Togo Togo (), officially the Togolese Republic (french: République togolaise), is a country in West Africa West Africa or Western Africa is the westernmost region of Africa. The United Nations defines Western Africa as the 17 countries of Benin ...

Togo
,
Tunisia ) , image_map = Tunisia location (orthographic projection).svg , map_caption = Location of Tunisia in northern Africa Africa is the world's second-largest and second-most populous , after in both cases. At about 30.3 million km2 (11. ...

Tunisia
. * Middle East:
Israel Israel (; he, יִשְׂרָאֵל, translit=Yīsrāʾēl; ar, إِسْرَائِيل, translit=ʾIsrāʾīl), officially the State of Israel ( he, מְדִינַת יִשְׂרָאֵל, label=none, translit=Medīnat Yīsrāʾēl; ), is a ...

Israel
,
Saudi Arabia (''Shahada'') , national_anthem = "National Anthem of Saudi Arabia, " "National Anthem of Saudi Arabia" , image_map = Saudi Arabia (orthographic projection).svg , capital = Riyadh , coordinates ...

Saudi Arabia
,
Jordan Jordan ( ar, الأردن; tr. ' ), officially the Hashemite Kingdom of Jordan,; tr. ') is a country in Western Asia Western Asia, West Asia, or Southwest Asia, is the westernmost subregion A subregion is a part of a larger region In ge ...

Jordan
,
Syria Syria ( ar, سُورِيَا or ar, سُورِيَة, ''Sūriyā''), officially the Syrian Arab Republic ( ar, ٱلْجُمْهُورِيَّةُ ٱلْعَرَبِيَّةُ ٱلسُّورِيَّةُ, al-Jumhūrīyah al-ʻArabīyah as-S ...

Syria
,
Iran Iran ( fa, ایران ), also called Persia, and officially the Islamic Republic of Iran, is a country in Western Asia Western Asia, West Asia, or Southwest Asia, is the westernmost subregion A subregion is a part of a larger regio ...

Iran
and
Iraq Iraq ( ar, الْعِرَاق, translit=al-ʿIrāq; ku, عێراق, translit=Êraq), officially the Republic of Iraq ( ar, جُمْهُورِيَّة ٱلْعِرَاق '; ku, کۆماری عێراق, translit=Komarî Êraq), is a country i ...

Iraq
, at the town of
Akashat Principal railway routes in Iraq with westernmost terminus at Akashat Akashat ( ar, عكاشات) is a small town in the northwest of the Ar-Rutba District of the Al Anbar province of Iraq, on the road between the towns of Ar-Rutbah and Al-Qa'i ...
, near the Jordanian border. * Central Asia: Kazakhstan * Oceania: Australia, Makatea, Nauru, and
Banaba Island BanabaThe correct spelling and etymology in Gilbertese should be ''Bwanaba'' but the Constitution of Kiribati writes Banaba. Because of the spelling in English or French, the name was very often written Paanapa or Paanopa, as it was in 1901 Act. ...

Banaba Island
In 2007, at the current rate of consumption, the supply of phosphorus was estimated to run out in 345 years. However, some scientists thought that a "peak phosphorus" will occur in 30 years and Dana Cordell from Institute for Sustainable Futures said that at "current rates, reserves will be depleted in the next 50 to 100 years". Reserves refer to the amount assumed recoverable at current market prices, and, in 2012, the USGS estimated 71 billion tons of world reserves, while 0.19 billion tons were mined globally in 2011. Phosphorus comprises 0.1% by mass of the average rock (while, for perspective, its typical concentration in vegetation is 0.03% to 0.2%), and consequently there are quadrillions of tons of phosphorus in Earth's 3 * 1019 ton crust, albeit at predominantly lower concentration than the deposits counted as reserves from being inventoried and cheaper to extract; if it is assumed that the phosphate minerals in phosphate rock are hydroxyapatite and fluoroapatite, phosphate minerals contain roughly 18.5% phosphorus by weight and if phosphate rock contains around 20% of these minerals, the average phosphate rock has roughly 3.7% phosphorus by weight. Some phosphate rock deposits, such as Mulberry, Florida#Economy, Mulberry in Florida, are notable for their inclusion of significant quantities of radioactive uranium isotopes. This is a concern because radioactivity can be released into surface waters in the process of application of the resultant phosphate fertilizer (e.g. in many tobacco farming operations in the southeast US). In December 2012, Cominco Resources announced an updated JORC compliant resource of their Hinda project in Republic of the Congo, Congo-Brazzaville of 531 Mt, making it the largest measured and indicated phosphate deposit in the world.


Mining

The three principal phosphate producer countries (China,
Morocco ) , image_map = Morocco (orthographic projection, WS claimed).svg , map_caption = Location of Morocco in northwest Africa.Dark green: Undisputed territory of Morocco.Lighter green: Western Sahara, a United Nations lis ...

Morocco
and the United States) account for about 70% of world production.


In ecological terms, because of its important role in biological systems, phosphate is a highly sought after resource. Once used, it is often a limiting nutrient in Environment (biophysical), environments, and its availability may govern the rate of growth of organisms. This is generally true of freshwater environments, whereas nitrogen is more often the limiting nutrient in marine (seawater) environments. Addition of high levels of phosphate to environments and to micro-environments in which it is typically rare can have significant ecological consequences. For example, blooms in the populations of some organisms at the expense of others, and the collapse of populations deprived of resources such as oxygen (see eutrophication) can occur. In the context of pollution, phosphates are one component of total dissolved solids, a major indicator of water quality, but not all phosphorus is in a molecular form that algae can break down and consume. Calcium hydroxyapatite and calcite precipitates can be found around bacteria in alluvial topsoil. As clay minerals promote biomineralization, the presence of bacteria and clay minerals resulted in calcium hydroxyapatite and calcite precipitates. Phosphate deposits can contain significant amounts of naturally occurring heavy metals. Mining operations processing phosphate rock can leave tailings piles containing elevated levels of cadmium, lead, nickel, copper, chromium, and uranium. Unless carefully managed, these waste products can leach heavy metals into groundwater or nearby estuaries. Uptake of these substances by plants and marine life can lead to concentration of toxic heavy metals in food products.


See also

*Pyrophosphate – *Polyphosphate – *Metaphosphate – *Fertilizer *Hypophosphite – *Organophosphorus compounds *Phosphate – OP(OR)3, such as triphenyl phosphate *Phosphate conversion coating *Phosphate soda, a soda fountain beverage *Phosphinate – OP(OR)R2 *Phosphine – PR3 *Phosphine oxide – OPR3 *Phosphinite – P(OR)R2 *Phosphite – P(OR)3 *Phosphogypsum *Phosphonate – OP(OR)2R *Phosphonite – P(OR)2R *Phosphorylation *Diammonium phosphate - (NH4)2HPO4 *Disodium phosphate – Na2HPO4 *Monosodium phosphate – NaH2PO4 *Sodium tripolyphosphate – Na5P3O10 *Ouled Abdoun Basin


References


External links


US Minerals Databrowser
provides data graphics covering consumption, production, imports, exports and price for phosphate and 86 other minerals
Phosphate: analyte monograph
– The Association for Clinical Biochemistry and Laboratory Medicine {{Authority control Functional groups Phosphorus oxyanions Phosphates, Industrial minerals Concrete admixtures Phosphorus(V) compounds