Date: Fri, 29 Apr 2005 15:46:13 -0700
Reply-To: Debbie Decker <dmdecker**At_Symbol_Here**UCDAVIS.EDU>
Sender: DCHAS-L Discussion List <DCHAS-L**At_Symbol_Here**LIST.UVM.EDU>
From: Debbie Decker <dmdecker**At_Symbol_Here**UCDAVIS.EDU>
Subject: Re: Peroxides within empty containers.
In-Reply-To: <427288CB.3050207**At_Symbol_Here**>

A quick google search revealed the following:

in which it appears they have cribbed a fair portion of Rick Kelly's (LLNL)
paper on peroxidizable compounds.

And this one that has descriptions of a variety of lab accidents with
corrective actions noted - this is probably of wide interest to the group
(it is good to be a hunter/gatherer):

Is this what you're looking for?  If you're looking for brissance or
explosive force, I don't think you'll be able to find that data since
peroxidized ethers are not a material of interest to those interested in
blowing stuff up.  People have lost all sorts of body parts from exploding
ether cans.  There may be fatalities - Jim Kauffman at the Lab Safety
Intitute ( would know.

I would not mess with this can.  I'd call up a reactives disposal firm and
let them deal with it.


At 02:19 PM 4/29/2005 -0500, Kent Candee wrote:
>Anthony's advice is good and correct. A disposal company trained in
>handling potential explosives is used for containers of ethyl ether,
>whether empty or not. I am mainly searching for information on the
>potential detonation force of peroxides that are left in and empty
>On 4/29/2005 1:29 PM, Debbie Decker wrote:
>>At 12:38 PM 4/29/2005 -0500, you wrote:
>>>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.
>>Anthony's advice to contract with a reactive chemicals disposal firm is
>>excellent. I would add the following couple of details to it.
>>What the disposal firm needs to do is remotely open the can and add a
>>suitable solvent (ethanol is probably a good choice) then reseal the can
>>and dispose as a flammable liquid lab pack, carefully re-labelling it
>>according to your local requirements. I don't know if I'd attempt to bulk
>>it with other flammable liquids at that point. If the container comes
>>apart during the remote opening, well, you've solved your problem,
>>haven't you?
>>Onyx Environmental is a firm we've used - I have no financial or personal
>>interest in Onyx.
>>Hope this helps,
>>Debbie M. Decker, Campus Chemical Hygiene Officer
>>Environmental Health and Safety
>>University of California, Davis
>>1 Shields Ave.
>>Davis, CA 95616
>>(530)754-7964/(530)752-4527 (FAX)
>>Co-Conspirator to Make the World A
>>Better Place -- Visit and join the conspiracy

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