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What is Plaster of Paris?
How do you make it? Homemade


Plaster of Paris is a Calcium sulfate semi-hydrate (CaSO4,½ H2O) derived from Gypsum, a calcium sulfate di-hydrate (CaSO4, 2H2O), by firing this mineral at relatively low temperature and thus reducing it to powder.

CaSO4,  2H2O  + HEAT -------> CaSO4, 1/2 H2O  + 1.5 H2O

In 1700’s, Paris was already the “Capital of plaster” since all the walls of wooden houses were covered with plaster, as a protection against fire. The King of France enforced rule after the big fire in England 1666.

Large Gypsum deposits near Paris ► Mined ► Manufacture of Plaster of Paris

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Items Needed

(Apparatus) to make plaster of paris with glue

Instructions and procedure

Properties of Plaster Of Paris

  • It is fine hygroscopic white powder
  • Its melting point is 1630C
  • Its density is 2.63 g/cm3
  • It sets quickly on mixing with water giving out heat
  • Expands slightly on setting

USES of Plaster of Paris

  • Because of its property of slight expansion on setting, it is used for filling cracks and holes in plaster
  • It is also used for filling cracks and knots in wooden surface before painting polishing
  • Plaster of Paris is used in making surgical bandages where movable parts of the body are to be held rigidly in place
  • It is used in chalk
  • As plaster of Paris has high melting point, it is used for plastering the walls of wooden houses, such as a protection against fire
  • It is used for making models and statues


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