Sciencemadness Discussion Board

Australia: Where to buy, or how to produce, aluminium oxide?

RobertRobinson75 - 3-6-2013 at 21:00

I need some Al2O3 for an oxidation, however I can't seem to find a source available to me for it here.

Is there a relatively easy method of production, or an OTC source for this compound that I'm failing to find?

Any help would be much appreciated.

Dr.Bob - 4-6-2013 at 06:36

Some hardware/paint stores will sell it as an abrasive or paint pigment. It is really quite stable, not sure how to use it as an oxidant, since it is already at a happy oxidation state.

Or just burn aluminum in air, that will make lots of Alumina. But if you can oxidize things with it, I will be very impressed.

phlogiston - 4-6-2013 at 07:46

Check a ceramics supplier.

It is not normally used as an oxidiser. It would only oxidise very strong reductors such as alkali metals, but those are readily oxidised by exposure to air. Are you sure you are looking for the right thing? The fact that you need to ask where/how to get such an easily available chemical suggests you are relative inexperienced in this field.

Fantasma4500 - 4-6-2013 at 09:59

you could also try NaOH or HCl + Al
the AlCl(3?) and then you should be able to decompose it into Al(OH)2
the NaOH + Al would make some more complex salt which could possibly be decomposed into Al(OH)2 or Al2O3 anyways

AlCl3 + NaHCO3 > NaCl + Al(OH)2
aluminium carbonate spontaneously decomposes so its possibly it could go straight into Al2O3 instead of Al(OH)2

bbartlog - 4-6-2013 at 10:38

You should figure out what form of alumina you need and then proceed. It is relatively easy to make a sludge of finely divided Al(OH)3 using aluminum and aqueous base, and that can be dehydrated to Al2O3 powder. But if you need something like activated alumina, or particles of a particular size, then you might have to order it.

DrSchnufflez - 4-6-2013 at 17:07

I know that you can buy aluminium hydroxide in Australia. You just need to look.
And an oxidation with alumina? That is interesting in itself. :)

RobertRobinson75 - 5-6-2013 at 19:06

Thanks for the suggestions, I did finally find a local supplier. I think when I posted this thread it just wasn't my day for locating who could supply it where I live, the posts here helped out though.

To clarify, Al2O3 can be used as a catalyst for oxidation reactions; see this paper here for details. PDF warning on that link, for those concerned.

Al2O3 can also be used in a mix with KMnO4 and copper sulfate pentahydrate for another solvent free reduction, I believe the paper for that can be found on the Rhodium archives somewhere.

zed - 7-6-2013 at 12:45

Common lapidary supply. Try your local rock shop.