# Applications of magnesium sulfate monohydrate MgSO4 · H2O

How is magnesium sulfate monohydrate $$\ce{MgSO4 * H2O}$$ used for in chemistry and how does it work as a valuable laboratory drying agent?

I could not find too much information in my book or the internet besides the basics (chemical formula, physical or chemical characteristics, etc.), but I did find what it can be used in. For example, fertilizer, feed additives for livestock, nutrient flavor enhancer, pharmaceuticals, leather and fur production, coloring fabrics, fermentation in beer, paper production, sewage treatment, cosmetics, but nothing about how or why chemistry labs would use it. What is its purpose?

Each time I tried to look it up other products that sounded similar but not the same appeared such as $$\ce{MgSO4 * 7H2O}$$ , manganese sulfate, manganous sulfate, etc.

• I hope the additional information was sufficient enough to prove I put effort into solving this problem on my own. – Leilana Valdez Feb 16 at 5:47
• manganese sulfate and manganous sulfate are not hydrates of magnesium sulfate. There is big different between $\ce{Mg}$ and $\ce{Mn}$. – Mathew Mahindaratne Feb 16 at 6:56
• Briefly, anhydrous magnesium sulfate ($\ce{MgSO4}$) is commonly used as a desiccant in organic synthesis due to its affinity for water (Wikipedia). Anhydrous $\ce{Na2SO4}$ and $\ce{CaCl2}$ are also used in similar manner. – Mathew Mahindaratne Feb 16 at 7:02
• Is magnesium sulfate monohydrate MgSO4⋅H2O the same as MgSO4? What is the reason for MgSO4⋅H2O creation? What is its purpose? – Leilana Valdez Feb 16 at 8:36
• If it were the same, it would be written the same. As to the purpose: like most chemical compounds, it has none. – Ivan Neretin Feb 16 at 8:59