Magnesium chloride is used in low temperature conditions on roads, pavements and parking lots. When traffic conditions are compromised due to adverse weather conditions, magnesium chloride helps prevent ice binding, allowing snow removal vehicles to clear the roads more efficiently. Magnesium chloride is less toxic than sodium chloride or calcium chloride, thus producing less negative effects on the fauna, water or soil surrounding the treated area. A prompt use of magnesium chloride reduces the amount of snow and ice deposited on the ground, thus limiting the overall contribution of labor and machinery needed to clean up the roads in the event of a snowfall. It can also be used effectively to remove a thin layer of snow or ice that has already hit the ground.
Magnesium chloride has various applications:
- as a starting substance for the production of magnesium metal by electrolysis at high temperature
- used in the manufacture of fabrics, paper, fireproof materials and cements
- when mixed with magnesium oxide, it forms the magnesicic cement
- it is used as a flocculating agent in water treatment.
- in the food industry it is used as an acidity regulator, firming agent, flavor enhancer and anti-caking
- in the European Union it is the food additive E511, without limits of use both in food and in organic farming
- used in the pharmaceutical and cosmetics industries
- can be used as a coagulant in the preparation of tofu.
Magnesium chloride is available in tablets or in the form of a staple for direct applications on snow and ice.