Anhydrous magnesium sulfate is commonly used as a desiccant in organic synthesis due to its affinity for water and compatibility with most organic compounds.
During work-up, an organic phase is treated with anhydrous magnesium sulfate. The hydrated solid is then removed with filtration, decantation or distillation (if the boiling point is low enough). Other inorganic sulfate salts such as sodium sulfate and calcium sulfate may be used in the same way.
manufacturer: Sigma / Merck