Re: sodium hydroxide and its alias "caustic soda" A number of years ago I was contacted by the building maintenance engineer who said,"The boiler company sent us some cleaner. It's some kind of SODA STUFF. Can we scoop it up with our bare hands?" A check of the barrel revealed only the words CAUSTIC SODA. No chemical name; no warning label. The term caustic didn';t register because the engineer thought acids were caustic and acids are liquids and this was a solid. The word SODA was the only one to register. Wm. C. Penker School District of Neillsville Neillsville, WI 54456 "Greene, Ben"
wrote: >Hello List - For training purposes, I'm putting together a list of >laboratory incidents/accidents/close calls/confusions that resulted from use >of incorrect nomenclature (to emphasize the need to use and understand >correct nomenclature). If you can think of any that would be of use, I >would appreciate it. I can also summarize and post to the list. > >I've got the old "barium oxide" name for "barium peroxide", and the classic >trike/TCE/PCE/TCA mess for the chlorinated ethanes/ethenes so dearly loved >as cleaning solvents. > >A related example of what I'm looking for and the reference follow: > >A violent explosion took place after a student (pursuing an independent >research project) attempted to follow a standard U.K. forensic procedure for >fiber analysis. The student had used 0.1 g of a jute rope sample, 20 ml of >glacial acetic acid, and 20 ml of 30 percent hydrogen peroxide. After >heating the mixture in a flask in a boiling water bath on a hotplate, a >detonation occurred. The ceramic top of the hotplate blew apart into rather >massive fragments that were thought responsible for the cracking and damage >of the laminated safety glass of the fume hood sash. Fortunately, the hood >sash was down and the blast and fragments confined to the hood with no >injuries. In this case, the mishap was attributed in part to the use of a >more concentrated hydrogen peroxide solution than was called for in the >procedure. This was due to the nomenclature employed by the U.K. procedure >that was unfamiliar to American workers: a "20 volume" hydrogen peroxide >solution was called for, not 20 percent. A "20 volume" hydrogen peroxide >solution refers to the amount of hydrogen peroxide that can evolve 20 ml of >oxygen for each ml of solution, and actually corresponds to 6 percent >hydrogen peroxide. Other factors, such as possible metal ions in the fiber >sample or accidental contaminants may also have played a role in the >explosion. In addition, the shattering of the ceramic hotplate top >suggested this possible shrapnel source might best be avoided where >explosion hazards may occur. > >De Forest, P. and Rothchild, R. "Fiber Analysis Using Heated Hydrogen >Peroxide." Chemical & Engineering News, Vol. 65(31), 1987:2 > > >Thanks, Ben > >Ben Greene, Ph.D. >Honeywell, NASA White Sands Test Facility > __________________________________________________________________ McAfee VirusScan Online from the Netscape Network. Comprehensive protection for your entire computer. Get your free trial today! http://channels.netscape.com/ns/computing/mcafee/index.jsp?promo=393397 Get AOL Instant Messenger 5.1 free of charge. Download Now! http://aim.aol.com/aimnew/Aim/register.adp?promo=380455
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