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Author: Subject: Beginning question about making copper chloride
keithakers
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[*] posted on 20-8-2018 at 05:06
Beginning question about making copper chloride


Hello,

I'm trying to make copper chloride which I will then make copper carbonate and oxide out of for use in pyrotechnics. I know there are easier ways if you already have copper sulfate, but I would have to make that as well so I decided to just go this route.

I have 115g of copper wire cut into small pieces sitting in a solution of HCl and H2O2 (3%). I would use stronger peroxide, but once again, I don't have any. Can I safely speed up this reaction by heating it? I just wanted to make sure there weren't any unwanted byproducts.

Side note: yesterday I tried making copper sulfate with what I thought was copper wire, H2O2, and H2SO4. Turns out it was only copper plated aluminum wire. I quickly found out that this reaction release SO and simply precipitates the copper (if what I read was correct and my guesses about the the copper colored precipitate).

I guess the point of this story is...don't do what I did. Filling part of your house with poisonous/irritating fumes is not something you would like. Luckily it wasn't too much and I have an industrial strength fan and a respirator. Anyhow, done with my tangent.

If anyone has any suggestions on better ways to do this reaction with not that many chemicals, or a better route to carbonate and oxide, I'm all ears.

Edit: On 2nd thought, the answer to this is obvious. However if you have a better way to arrive at CuCO3 or CuO I'm still open

[Edited on 20-8-2018 by keithakers]
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fusso
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[*] posted on 20-8-2018 at 10:11


If you have HNO3 then thats the fastest way(other than buying CuO directly). If you don't then try electrolysis with Cu anode in HCl/H2SO4, whichever is cheaper.



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Hendrik
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[*] posted on 20-8-2018 at 10:14


First of all, in order to make CuSO4, mixing copper metal with H2SO4 is the most efficient method. It will release a lot of toxic SO2 gas, but with proper ventilation and a respirator it shouldn't be a problem.
Secondly, heating your reaction mixture of copper, HCl and H2O2 may increase the reaction speed. You won't get any unwanted byproducts.
Basic copper carbonate can be easily made using CuSO4 and Na2CO3. CuCO3 will absorb moisture from the air, yielding Cu2(OH)2CO3. CuO is pretty easy to do. Just heat some basic copper carbonate up until the greenish blue powder will become black.
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CobaltChloride
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[*] posted on 20-8-2018 at 13:15


@Hendrik the reaction of Cu with H2SO4 (even with boiling concentrated acid) is very slow. It is not a viable method.

A very simple method is making a concentrated ammonium persulfate/ sodium persulfate (can be found at some electronics stores) solution (use a small stoichiometric excess of persulfate) and adding small pieces of copper to it. If you heat this solution close to boiling point for some time, the copper will dissolve as CuSO4. Be careful to add extra water to maintain approximately the same volume. After all copper dissolves, just cool down the solution to room temperature and add enough water to dissolve the CuSO4 which might have precipitated (if you use sodium persulfate, there might also be sodium sulfate precipitated at this point. You can just decant the solution from this salt after the precipitate becomes colorless due to all CuSO4 being dissolved and there being only Na2SO4 left). Adding Na2CO3 to this will, of course, precipitate basic copper carbonate. Be careful of foaming when adding Na2CO3.

This method is only viable if you can get a persulfate salt cheaply where you live. For me, Na2S2O8 is pretty cheap, but for others persulfates are expensive.

Also, the reaction of the copper plated aluminium wire with H2SO4 and H2O2 shouldn't produce any irritating gasses. The pain you felt was due to the aerosolized acid and aluminium salts. Please put a watch glass over your beaker when you have a reaction mixture that bubbles in order to avoid generating these aerosols.
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keithakers
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[*] posted on 22-8-2018 at 10:02


@cobaltchloride

Are you in the US? I was just wondering what stores sold the persulfates.

And so far so good with the copper chloride. I decanted some and reacted with sodium bicarbonate and got a nice mass of blue/green slop that is turning more blue as it dries.

I tried heating the solution but it made the room smell funny and then I tried the oven which did mostly the same. When I was carrying it out to my screened in porch to dry with a big industrial fan I have, I got a whiff of the vapors coming off of it. Didn't exactly smell like Cl but it certainly was unpleasant and made me cough a bit. Did I just breathe in CuCl2 fumes?

Anyway, thanks everyone for the responses. My last class in chem was 8 years ago and I was a terrible student back then. I've been reading through stuff starting with some more basic stuff and while I remember some, I realized that I never learned a lot of stuff particularly well before we moved on. Maybe that's why I had a C- in Ochem. Anyway. Thanks again!

Edit: also I realize that it's definitely more time effective and probably cost effective just to buy the end product, but I think it would be neat to make some fireworks out of chemicals I synthesized.

[Edited on 22-8-2018 by keithakers]
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fusso
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[*] posted on 22-8-2018 at 10:23


Quote: Originally posted by keithakers  
@cobaltchloride

Are you in the US? I was just wondering what stores sold the persulfates.

And so far so good with the copper chloride. I decanted some and reacted with sodium bicarbonate and got a nice mass of blue/green slop that is turning more blue as it dries.

I tried heating the solution but it made the room smell funny and then I tried the oven which did mostly the same. When I was carrying it out to my screened in porch to dry with a big industrial fan I have, I got a whiff of the vapors coming off of it. Didn't exactly smell like Cl but it certainly was unpleasant and made me cough a bit. Did I just breathe in CuCl2 fumes?

[Edited on 22-8-2018 by keithakers]
Some members display their locations in their user control panel, and the location will always show up in their posts under the author. He's in Romania. CuCl2 isn't volatile so you can't breathe that in under ambient conditions.



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[*] posted on 22-8-2018 at 10:45


If I was making copper(II) chloride from scratch, I would heat the wire in a flame to convert at least the surface to an oxide, then add that to a shallow dish of hydrochloric acid. Then just let it sit, exposed to air. The reaction of copper with hydrochloric acid and air is autocatalytic- the more copper ions in solution, the faster it will go.



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keithakers
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[*] posted on 23-8-2018 at 16:14


Quote: Originally posted by fusso  
Quote: Originally posted by keithakers  
@cobaltchloride

Are you in the US? I was just wondering what stores sold the persulfates.

And so far so good with the copper chloride. I decanted some and reacted with sodium bicarbonate and got a nice mass of blue/green slop that is turning more blue as it dries.

I tried heating the solution but it made the room smell funny and then I tried the oven which did mostly the same. When I was carrying it out to my screened in porch to dry with a big industrial fan I have, I got a whiff of the vapors coming off of it. Didn't exactly smell like Cl but it certainly was unpleasant and made me cough a bit. Did I just breathe in CuCl2 fumes?

[Edited on 22-8-2018 by keithakers]
Some members display their locations in their user control panel, and the location will always show up in their posts under the author. He's in Romania. CuCl2 isn't volatile so you can't breathe that in under ambient conditions.


Ahh, thanks for giving the newb a tip on how to use the forum. And I was referring to after I'd heated the solution I breathed some unpleasant vapors, but I suppose I should've expected that
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[*] posted on 24-8-2018 at 04:16


If you are not in a hurry, you can just put copper in hydrochloric acid (with some excess, say 50 % excess acid, or 3 moles of acid per mole of copper). Oxygen present in solution will allow the copper to dissolve at first and as copper(II) chloride is formed the reaction will go faster until all the copper is consumed.

The reaction will take a few days or a few weeks unless you stir, bubble air through the solution, or heat. Don't heat to much or you will evaporate the acid.
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wg48
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[*] posted on 24-8-2018 at 05:26


Its probably simpler to use the oxychloride in pyrotechnics as its insoluble and not deliquescent and adds oxygen. Its also much simpler to produce, just requires excess copper metal in HCL and air (that should be a lower case L but my spell checker auto corrects it). You will probably find a procedure in the forum for it or the chloride.



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For normal, standard service typically 200-230°C, for short-term (minutes) service max 400°C
Maximum thermal shock resistance is 160°C
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Metacelsus
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[*] posted on 24-8-2018 at 05:30


If you want the carbonate and/or oxide, why not buy copper sulfate (sold as root killer) and react it with sodium carbonate or sodium hydroxide?



As below, so above.
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Diachrynic
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[*] posted on 24-8-2018 at 05:44


Quote: Originally posted by Metacelsus  
If you want the carbonate and/or oxide, why not buy copper sulfate (sold as root killer) and react it with sodium carbonate or sodium hydroxide?


My guess is to avoid sodium contamination, since it is intended for pyrotechnic use.




we apologize for the inconvenience
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Metacelsus
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[*] posted on 24-8-2018 at 14:02


In that case, potassium carbonate/hydroxide would also work.



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AJKOER
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[*] posted on 24-8-2018 at 16:02


Copper oxide is easily prepared at low cost and good quantity in a galvanic cell (not electrolysis).

See my thread and pictures at: https://www.sciencemadness.org/whisper/viewthread.php?tid=84... .

Note, there is an induction period (nothing much occurring) followed by a strong level of reactivity!

Also, the ratio of the surface area of the coins (should be larger) relative to the piece of copper metal (lower area) does visually impact the rate of corrosion of the Cu to CuO :o .

I believe that one will find that a fresh preparation of CuO is more reactive than one that has aged.

[Edited on 25-8-2018 by AJKOER]
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[*] posted on 24-8-2018 at 16:26


If he wants to avoid the color of sodium and also has access to root killer, he could very easily just react ammonium carbonate (baker's ammonia) and copper sulfate. The ammonium ions don't interfere with anything here. The slight decomposition to ammonia in solution might redissolve a bit of copper carbonate, but that shouldn't reduce the yield too much.



[Edited on 25-8-2018 by CobaltChloride]
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keithakers
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[*] posted on 25-8-2018 at 06:27


Sorry guys, just checking this again, but I just wanted to start with copper metal as the starting material. Not for any rational reason or anything, just something I wanted to do.

And @wg48 for the oxychloride you just react a base with copper ii chloride solution without stirring right? Like baking soda or NaOH?

I was trying to find info on that compound as well but it doesn't even seem like everyone agrees on what copper oxychloride is the common name for. I found that on the SM wiki but not much else.

[Edited on 25-8-2018 by keithakers]
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wg48
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[*] posted on 25-8-2018 at 10:09


Keith: Yes you probably can make it with CuCl2 and a hydroxide but that is not what I was suggesting.

If you place excess copper metal in HCl and bubble air in (or leave it open to the air with occasional stirring for several days) initially a copper chloride complex is formed which not only continues to dissolve the copper eventually it deposits a bright green oxychloride contaminated with white CuCl as the HCl is used up. One pot reaction and just filter and wash for the oxychloride.

Yes I think your correct apparently there are several oxychlorides and or confusion about there formula.

Here a snip from a pyro site with various options for synthesis.

Formula: [3CuO.CuCl2•3.5H2O]
Synonyms: Copper(II)oxychloride, tricopper chloride trihydroxide, copper chloride oxide hydrate
Description: Copper oxychloride is a green powder used as blue color agent, is a basic copper chloride and is usually manufactured either by the action of hydrochloric acid on copper metal or by the air oxidation of cuprous chloride suspensions. It has a number of applications, by far the most important being as an agricultural fungicide, for which purpose it is extensively employed in formulated form as dusts, wettable powders and pastes.
Hazards: Harmful if swallowed or inhaled. Overexposure can lead to nausea, diarrhea, gastrointestinal distress, headaches, weakness, and possible liver and kidney damage. May cause irritation of eyes, nasal passages, throat and skin.
Sources: Pyro suppliers such as Skylighter.
Copper oxychloride can be produce easily at home from metallic copper. First, the electrolysis of copper anode in KCl/NaCl solution, will yield copper I oxide (red). The oxide is washed to remove alkali ion by repeated decantations. Then hydrochloric acid is mixed with the washed oxide in a very stochiometric quantity. Not enough is best and easier but yield impure end product. The solution is then bubbled through with air to convert CuCl to Oxychloride and CuCl2 following this reaction:
6 CuCl + 3/2 O2 + 3 H2O → 2 Cu3Cl2(OH)4 + CuCl2
This process can take more than 2 day with an aquarium pump. Be sure to recover and boil down CuCl2 produce too.

From http://pyrodata.com/PyroGuide/index.php%5Etitle=Copper_oxych...




Borosilicate glass:
Good temperature resistance and good thermal shock resistance but finite.
For normal, standard service typically 200-230°C, for short-term (minutes) service max 400°C
Maximum thermal shock resistance is 160°C
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