What is ClO4?

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What is ClO4?
ClO4 is the chemical notation for perchlorate. It is an ion that is derived from HClO4 or perchloric acid. Perchlorates are also salts which can be found naturally on soil, surface water, and ground water. This chemical ion can also be found “man-made” particularly in manufacturing industries.

Perchlorates are used in a variety of industries for a variety of uses. In the medical field, they are used in the treatment of the disorders in the thyroid gland. Perchlorates are also widely used in the making of fireworks and firecrackers. They are also mixed with other substances to form compounds such as “lithium perchlorate”. This particular compound is used for the oxygen it gives off during decomposition. This oxygen is helpful for submarines and space modules where oxygen backup may be needed. Many chemicals that contain perchlorate are also used in making batteries, explosives, safety flares, and vehicle restrain systems.

But aside from its usefulness in a variety of industries, perchlorates are also considered contaminants to the soil and drinking water. Most types of perchlorate compounds and/or chemicals are able to dissolve in water and may greatly affect human health. Besides its medicinal use in those with thyroid disorders, perchlorate also has a negative effect on human bodies, particularly on the uptake of iodide by the thyroid gland. When this process is affected by perchlorate contamination, disruptions in the normal processes of the thyroid gland may occur. The thyroid gland is essential for normal development in children. It also serves to control the release of some hormones for normal functioning of the body. When the iodide uptake is affected, people usually present with symptoms similar to iodine deficiency. Though the effect of perchlorates is limited to the thyroid gland and not to any other parts of the body, many health watch-groups continue to push for safety standards in terms of perchlorate levels on the water supply.

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