EDTA sample on a watchglass
| Systematic IUPAC name
| Other names
|Molar mass||292.24 g/mol|
|Appearance||Colorless crystalline solid|
|Density||860 g/cm3 (at 20 °C)|
|Melting point||240 °C (464 °F; 513 K) (decomposes; decomposition begins above 150 °C)|
| 0.0162 g/100 ml (2.7 °C)|
3.8 g/100 ml (25 °C)
9.381 g/100 ml (100 °C)
|Solubility||Soluble in aq. alkali|
|Vapor pressure||1.5·10-12 mmHg (25 °C)|
Std enthalpy of
|−1.7654 to −1.7580 MJ/mol|
|Safety data sheet||Sigma-Aldrich|
|Lethal dose or concentration (LD, LC):|
LD50 (Median dose)
|1000 mg/kg (oral, rat)|
Except where otherwise noted, data are given for materials in their standard state (at 25 °C [77 °F], 100 kPa).
Ethylenediaminetetraacetic acid (more commonly EDTA) is a chemical compound with a variety of uses, in both chemistry and medicine, due to its ability to sequester metal ions.
EDTA usually binds to a metal cation through its two amines and four carboxylates.
EDTA is an odorless white solid, soluble in water.
EDTA is available as both free acid or more commonly as disodium or tetrasodium salt. Chelated fertilizers have EDTA in their composition, but extraction may not worth the effort if they're too diluted.
- Removal of heavy metals such as lead and mercury
- Water hardness and calcium determination
- Preservative for various reagents
- Separation of the lanthanide metals
EDTA isn't harmful to touch, though ingestion of large doses may lead to hypocalcaemia, due to the EDTA removing the Ca2+ ions from blood. Iron and other metals will also be removed, which may lead to mineral deficiency.
EDTA has low cytotoxic and genotoxic effect.
EDTA should be stored in closed bottles, away from corrosive reagents. Plastic bottles are suitable.
EDTA has low environmental impact, so it can be safely poured down the drain, though if it's binded to toxic metals, it may be a hazard to the environment and instead should be taken to hazardous waste disposal facilities.