Basic Copper Carbonate vs. Copper Carbonate

What's the Difference?

Basic Copper Carbonate and Copper Carbonate are both chemical compounds that contain copper and carbonate ions. However, they differ in their composition and properties. Basic Copper Carbonate, also known as verdigris, is a greenish-blue solid that is formed by the reaction of copper(II) salts with carbon dioxide and water. It has a more complex structure, with additional hydroxide ions incorporated into its crystal lattice. On the other hand, Copper Carbonate is a simple blue solid that is formed by the reaction of copper(II) salts with carbonate ions. It has a simpler structure without the presence of hydroxide ions. Both compounds are used in various applications, such as pigments, fungicides, and as a source of copper in chemical reactions.


AttributeBasic Copper CarbonateCopper Carbonate
Chemical FormulaCu2CO3(OH)2CuCO3
AppearanceGreenish-blue solidGreen solid
SolubilityInsoluble in waterSlightly soluble in water
UsesPigment, fungicide, algaecidePigment, fungicide, algaecide
Common NameMalachiteNone

Further Detail


Copper carbonate is a chemical compound that exists in two forms: basic copper carbonate and copper carbonate. While they share some similarities, they also have distinct attributes that set them apart. In this article, we will explore the characteristics of both compounds and discuss their various applications.

Basic Copper Carbonate

Basic copper carbonate, also known as verdigris, is a greenish-blue compound with the chemical formula Cu2CO3(OH)2. It is formed through the reaction of copper salts with carbon dioxide and water. One of the notable features of basic copper carbonate is its vibrant color, which makes it a popular choice in various industries.

Basic copper carbonate has a relatively low solubility in water, which means it tends to precipitate out of solution. This property makes it useful in the production of pigments, such as those used in paints, ceramics, and dyes. The compound's bright green hue adds vibrancy to these products, making them visually appealing.

Furthermore, basic copper carbonate has antimicrobial properties, which have been utilized in the preservation of wood and textiles. It acts as a fungicide and prevents the growth of mold and mildew, making it an effective additive in wood treatments and fabric coatings.

Another application of basic copper carbonate is in the field of agriculture. It is used as a fungicide and bactericide to protect crops from various diseases. By inhibiting the growth of harmful microorganisms, it helps to ensure healthy plant growth and higher crop yields.

Basic copper carbonate is also employed in the production of fireworks and pyrotechnics. Its ability to produce vibrant green flames and sparks makes it a popular choice for creating visually stunning displays. Additionally, it is used in the manufacturing of batteries, as it can act as a cathode material.

Copper Carbonate

Copper carbonate, also known as cupric carbonate, has the chemical formula CuCO3. It is a blue-green compound that occurs naturally as the mineral malachite. Copper carbonate is formed through the reaction of copper salts with carbonate ions, typically found in the presence of carbon dioxide.

One of the primary uses of copper carbonate is as a precursor for the production of other copper compounds. It serves as a starting material for the synthesis of copper oxide, copper sulfate, and various other copper salts. These compounds find applications in diverse fields, including agriculture, electronics, and pharmaceuticals.

Copper carbonate is also utilized in the field of art and restoration. It is commonly used as a pigment in oil paints, providing artists with a range of blue and green shades. The compound's stability and resistance to fading make it a valuable addition to artists' palettes.

In addition to its artistic applications, copper carbonate is employed in electroplating processes. It can be used as a source of copper ions, which are deposited onto a substrate to create a thin, protective layer. This technique is commonly used to enhance the appearance and durability of various metal objects.

Furthermore, copper carbonate has been investigated for its potential antimicrobial properties. Studies have shown that it exhibits inhibitory effects against certain bacteria and fungi. This property opens up possibilities for its use in the development of new antimicrobial agents and coatings.


Basic copper carbonate and copper carbonate are two distinct compounds with their own unique attributes and applications. Basic copper carbonate is known for its vibrant green color, low solubility, and antimicrobial properties, making it valuable in industries such as paints, wood preservation, agriculture, and pyrotechnics. On the other hand, copper carbonate serves as a precursor for the synthesis of other copper compounds, finds use in art and restoration, electroplating, and shows potential as an antimicrobial agent. Both compounds contribute to various fields and continue to be explored for their diverse applications.

Comparisons may contain inaccurate information about people, places, or facts. Please report any issues.