Date: Fri, 29 Apr 2005 14:01:56 -0400
Reply-To: ILPI <info**At_Symbol_Here**ILPI.COM>
Sender: DCHAS-L Discussion List <DCHAS-L**At_Symbol_Here**LIST.UVM.EDU>
From: ILPI <info**At_Symbol_Here**ILPI.COM>
Subject: Re: Peroxides within empty containers.
In-Reply-To: <4272710D.2020502**At_Symbol_Here**>

The crystals (if they are really present, of course) can can detonate
all by themselves.  Inside a metal can with a relatively narrow
opening, this could produce some serious shrapnel.

See here:  They might be good
folks to talk to about this.

Additional pictures and information about peroxides is available

Rob Toreki

>Scenario:  Ethyl ether in metal container that is over 10 years old.
>Peroxide content unknown.  Container is empty (<3%) to the best of our
>knowledge.  Cap is clear plastic with no visible signs of peroxides.
>Understand that peroxides can concentrate as the ether evaporates.
>Setting:  High school chemical storage room.  Lab pack team has been in
>to pack chemicals and left the ethyl ether behind because of its
>potential explosiveness.
>Questions:  How dangerous is this empty can?  Does it have to be treated
>as a hazardous waste?  Our understanding is that the peroxide crystals
>themselves do not have considerable detonation force without the
>contents of the ether.  The ether acts as the fuel for the explosion.
>Can the empty container go in the normal trash.
>Your thoughts and comments are appreciated.  We have been struggling
>with this issue; how to deal with legacy empty ether containers.

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