Kim- Because glove boxes can be used to protect the items inside or the people o utside (or both), there are several possible tests to do as you have seen f rom the various posts. However, for the work you describe (handling lithium in an argon atmosphere)- the concern is mostly for keeping oxygen and wate r out to preserve the quality and stability of the materials inside the box . Pressure tests will get you so far and tiny leaks in the gloves or seal s can be ignored if the glove box is kept positive with respect to the labo ratory. Testing the quality of the atmosphere inside the box is another ma tter- We use the a combination of the following tests to determine if our atmosphere is dry and oxygen free: * Gauges: our glove box has a built in oxygen, water and pressure sensor . When they are all working correctly, it provides a very good and quick c heck. * Light Bulb test: **I will not even start to discuss the safety issues of this method=85 Just want you to know that it is out there (and works pr etty well if you ask me) ** if you take an incandescent light bulb into an inert atmosphere, expose the filament to the internal inert atmosphere (whi ch is easier to say than to do) and plug it in- the light bulb should stay lit for a several days. If there is oxygen or water present, the light bu lb will fail. * Chemical test for Oxygen: Colorimetric test using zinc/titanium comple x (see first reference below)- we make the solution up on a schlenk line outside of the glove box, seal it and bring it into the glove box. Since y ou only need a few drops for each test- the original solution can be used f or several tests as long as it is kept sealed. * Chemical test for Water: Cut a piece of sodium in the glove box and w atch for decomposition (or lack thereof) on the fresh surface Other tests that can be used include Titanium tetrachloride (will smoke in presence of water) and Diethylzinc (will react with oxygen) A good reference for all of these is Dennis G. Sekutowski and Galen D. Stuc ky, J. Chem. Educ., 1976, 53 (2), p 110 "A simple oxygen test to use in dry boxes containing a solvent vapor atmosphere" The previous reference and a lot more information about working with glove boxes can be found in D. F. Shriver's "Manipulation of Air Sensitive Compou nds" (Wiley, 1986) Joseph M. Pickel, Ph.D., CCHO Center for Nanophase Materials Sciences Oak Ridge National Laboratory 1 Bethel Valley Road, MS 6494 Oak Ridge, TN 37934-6494 (865)576-0329 From: Kim Auletta
> Reply-To: DCHAS-L Discussion List > Date: Thu, 4 Nov 2010 14:15:00 -0400 To: "DCHAS-L**At_Symbol_Here**LIST.UVM.EDU " > Subject: [DCHAS-L] Glove box inspection checklist? I have a lab that is using a glove box to maintain an inert atmosphere with argon while working with lithium ribbon. While the operation looks ok on t he surface, they can't document or prove that they haven't had any failures (research labs are not production & no one ever thinks of these things!). Does anyone have a glove box inspection checklist or other info they can sh are? Thanks in advance for your help! Kim Auletta Lab Safety Specialist EH&S Z=6200 Stony Brook University kauletta**At_Symbol_Here**notes.cc.sunysb.edu 631-632-3032 FAX: 631-632-9683 EH&S Web site: http://www.stonybrook.edu/ehs/lab/ Remember to wash your hands!
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