Q: CAN 2-PROPANOL (isopropyl alcohol) FORM POTENTIALLY EXPLOSIVE PEROXIDES?
A: Yes, if it is at least HPLC purity.
Q: CAN POTASSIUM METAL FORM POTENTIALLY EXPLOSIVE PEROXIDES?
A: Yes, they actually form explosive super-oxides. If you have potassium that is red, purple, orange or any other colors then silver or white, these could be explosive super-oxides. These MUST be stabilized by reduction.
Q: WHAT IS THE PROBLEM WITH POWDER WHITE PICRIC ACID (TRINITROPHENOL)?
A: In this phase, it is considered a high explosive. Only trained individuals should touch or move this. This material would need to be stabilized with water or a select solvent. Dry picric acid is considered a 1.1D explosive by US DOT.
Q: WHY IS IT IMPORTANT TO HAVE AND USE A FUME HOOD WASH DOWN SYSTEM IN A FUME HOOD WHERE PERCHLORIC ACID IS BEING USED?
A: Most fume hood are made of sheet metal. When perchloric acid comes into contact with (sheet) metal, they form extremely explosive and unstable metal percholrates. The entire fume hood would have to be decontaminated by trained experts.
Q: WHAT IS THE BEST WAY TO STORE PEROXIDE FORMING SOLVENTS?
A: In an amber glass bottle or metal can, under nitrogen, and in a non-flammable storage cabinet. Do not store these solvents in clear glass jars, unmarked containers or in the refrigerator or freezer. For peroxides to form you need oxygen, so storing it under nitrogen deprives it of oxygen. Peroxides also need light to form, so storing the solvent in amber or opaque containers prevent light from entering the bottle. Two reasons not to store the solvent in the cold (i.e. refrigerator) is 1) if the solvent has an inhibitor, the cold actually will make the inhibitor useless and 2) if the solvent has peroxides, the mere temperature change can cause the peroxide bonds to break with explosive force.
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