Date: Mon, 11 Jul 2005 07:16:34 EDT
Reply-To: Labsafe**At_Symbol_Here**AOL.COM
Sender: DCHAS-L Discussion List <DCHAS-L**At_Symbol_Here**LIST.UVM.EDU>
From: Jim Kaufman <Labsafe**At_Symbol_Here**AOL.COM>
Subject: Re: Recent Lab Explosion
Comments: cc: labsafety-l**At_Symbol_Here**
In a message dated 7/11/2005 12:02:39 AM Eastern Daylight Time,
LISTSERV**At_Symbol_Here**LIST.UVM.EDU writes:

> I fail to see how gaseous HF can react with steel to produce an excessive
> hydrogen pressure and burst a cylinder:
>                       6HF + 2Fe yields 2FeF3 + 3H2
> The product would be FeF3, not FeF2, because fluorine is an excellent
> oxidizing agent.  Consequently, if anything, the gas pressure inside the
> cylinder would necessarily be reduced as the HF attacks the iron of the
> cylinder.
> It's obvious that the cause of the explosion was the thinning of the
> cylinder wall at one or more locations, NOT the pressure of the hydrogen.
> Jay Young

Hey Older (oldest?) Guy,

If Fluorine is such a good oxidizer why doesn't it oxidize iron to the more
oxidized state (+3) just as peroxides do when you kill them with +2 iron
(ferrous sulfate) to make ferric sulfate and reduced peroxides?  Why do you believe
that it will stop at the +2 state?

Not quite as old but working on it ... slowly.

James A. Kaufman, Ph.D.

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