Potassium alum adduct Borax crystal

Do you want to grow a crystal that changes its shape during the process? Perfect! This crystal will start as a normal alum crystal and later take on the cubic shape of borax. What you need: Potassium alum Borax A beaker Glass stirring rod or a spoon Distilled water (Tap water also work) Hot plate… Continue reading Potassium alum adduct Borax crystal

Chrome Alum Crystal

Chrome alum or chromium alum is a safe salt that produces dark, purplish crystals. Key Takeaways An alum is a type of chemical compound with the general formula XAl(SO4)2·12H2O, where X is a monovalent cation such as potassium or ammonium Alum crystals form octahedral shapes in their purest form Mixed Chrome Alum crystals consist of potassium alum (KAl(SO4)2·12H2O) mixed with chrome alum (KCr(SO4)2·12H2O)… Continue reading Chrome Alum Crystal

Bromine Aluminum Reaction

When bromine is introduced into a reaction vessel containing pieces of aluminum foil, a dramatic reaction occurs. Key Takeaways The following reaction occurs: 2 Al(s) + 3 Br2(l) ==> 2 AlBr3(s) The reaction is highly exothermic so that a huge part of the reactants is lost. Sparks from burning aluminum and bromine vapor are everywhere! Equipment &… Continue reading Bromine Aluminum Reaction

Fluorescent Tornado

Key Takeaways Fluorescein is a dark red solid but when dropped in water, the solution takes on a bright, vibrant green color.  By using a magnetic stirrer, a strong downward force is applied to the dye. This inhibits the dye from spreading, creating a tornado-like look Equipment & Chemicals Beaker (any size) Fluorescein disodium salt… Continue reading Fluorescent Tornado

Classic Thermite Reaction

A thermite reaction is a really good example of a redox reaction in action! Here is how to do the classic demo: Key Takeaways Fe2O3 (s) + 2 Al (s) → Al2O3 (s) + 2 Fe (s) The reaction needs high activation energy. Once it is running it becomes self-sustaining Thermite reactions produce an extreme… Continue reading Classic Thermite Reaction

How to make Singlet Oxygen

Key Takeaways Singlet oxygen is a special excited version of normal molecular oxygen. In solution, two singlet oxygen molecules crash into each other and release a flash of light which we see as a red glow. Outside of this reaction, singlet oxygen is something that’s pretty pervasive in the natural world. Lots of compounds when… Continue reading How to make Singlet Oxygen

Dissolve Cotton

Cellulose is immune to many well-known solvents like acetone or diluted acids. Using Schweizer’s Reagent we will be able to dissolve and reform Cellulose.  Key Takeaways Schweizer’s reagent is the chemical complex tetraamminediaquacopper dihydroxide, [Cu(NH3)4(H2O)2](OH)2 Schweizer’s reagent forms a cellulose-copper complex, which is soluble in water Acids will destroy the complex and release cellulose again What chemicals will… Continue reading Dissolve Cotton

Sulfur and Iron Reaction

A stoichiometric mixture of iron and sulfur reacts in a sparkling, glowing way – and can be started by a red-hot steel rod! Key Takeaways Fe(s) + S(s) –> FeS(s) The reaction is highly exothermic and releases 100kJ per mole of Iron Sulfide Equipment & Chemicals 10g of iron powder 5g of sulfur powder long… Continue reading Sulfur and Iron Reaction

Explosive Manganese

Manganese heptoxide, a highly reactive green liquid, is made by mixing solid potassium permanganate with concentrated sulphuric acid. Key Takeaways   Equipment & Chemicals concentrated sulfuric acid potassium permanganate acetone or any other flammable liquid (e.g. ethanol, methanol) optionally: charcoal, glycerol, sulfur The iodine clock reaction Take a very small amount of potassium permanganate (a… Continue reading Explosive Manganese

Mercury Thiocyanate Serpent

How to make the Pharoah’s Serpent (Mercury (II) Thiocyanate). Mercury (II) thiocyanate is made using potassium thiocyanate, mercury and concentrated nitric acid. How to perform the Pharaoh’s Serpent This is a simple firework demonstration. All you need to do is ignite a small pile of mercury(II) thiocyanate. Mercury thiocyanate is an insoluble white solid which can be… Continue reading Mercury Thiocyanate Serpent