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Author: Subject: help with drying out ammonium nitrate please
Christopher
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[*] posted on 23-5-2003 at 23:24
help with drying out ammonium nitrate please


i have obtained some ammonium nitrate but it's contains alot of moisture, what is a good method to dry it out could i use magnesium sulfate which has been dryed in an oven and what temperature should be used. Is it fairly safe to dry with a gas burner
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Microtek
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[*] posted on 24-5-2003 at 01:50


Dry it in the oven at 120 C. This drives out enough of the moisture for most purposes.
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Haggis
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[*] posted on 24-5-2003 at 08:05


Yes, heating will be the best bet. Like Microtek said, 120 is a good round about temperature. Dessicating will only take a long time and more effort. You can do this either by spreading it out on a baking pan in the oven or a small amount in beaker heating while you stir it constantly. For some reason I think that you got your ammonium nitrate from a coldpack that has already been used, am I right?
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vulture
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[*] posted on 24-5-2003 at 12:36


The problem with dessicating is that ammoniumnitrate itself is an extremely good dessicant, far superior to magnesiumsulfate.



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Christopher
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[*] posted on 24-5-2003 at 16:22


I did get it from an intant cold packs, i hadn't used them, but for some reason the prilled ammmonium nitrate looked and felt a bit wet .Which I though was a little weird. It's possible moisture could have got into the bag which was quite thin or the liquid isn't water at all. The ammonium nitrate might have be treated so it's not suitable for other purposes. I haven't done anything thing with it yet, because
i want research the chemical for safety and it's uses.
thanks for your advice it's a great help
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[*] posted on 24-5-2003 at 18:32


It likley wet because the goverment wants to stop people from using is as explosives...thats my guess at least...:P



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[*] posted on 24-5-2003 at 18:53


I think the government would find better ways to stop people from using AN as an explosive... after all, can't wet AN still be used to make ANNM and APAN? If I recall correctly, only ANFO does not work properly with wet AN.
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Christopher
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[*] posted on 26-5-2003 at 23:03


This is going to sound a little goofy but I looked at the ammonium nitrate and it's seems pretty dry and i haven't done anything to it and it was in a well sealed container. I guest i didn't eximine it close enough , the prills were shine though, I didn't touch the chemical much, because it not the healthest thing to do.

I did some research and found that prilled ammonium nitrate is usually coated with a conditioning agent for ease of handling and storage. A substance used for this is
kieselguhr there could be others if you know any please tell
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Marvin
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[*] posted on 27-5-2003 at 10:26


I think I have to disagree vulture. AN is not very powerful dessicating agent at all in my experience. Anhydrous magnesium sulphate on the other hand is a pretty damn good one, both in terms of ultimate H2O concentration, and total absorbed.

My AN assuming no water of crystalisation, is quite stable and dry inside the house unsealed and seems roughly comparable to sodium nitrate.
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[*] posted on 27-5-2003 at 15:03


I too have gotten coldpacks that have the AN moistened. I just dry it out in small amounts whn I need tous it with a small coffee mug warmer. It only gets to like 60-70C at the most I think but I live i a decently dry area so it works. The coffee mug warmer even will dehydrate copper sulfate hexahydrate. I'm a bit annoyed because it seems some KNO3 I got is moistened a bit but it isn't as if I can't dry that out either.
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[*] posted on 18-11-2016 at 10:05


i just finished drying a batch of ammonium nitrate in an oven at 160C and one big mistake i made was using a 416 stainless steel plate.
and it reacted a bit with it so use some other grade or metal.
it's very easy
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[*] posted on 26-11-2016 at 09:13


You should recrystallize before you dry it, most instant cold packs contain an anti-caking agent on the ammonium nitrate pellets. Then you should dry in an oven around 120-130 C.
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26-11-2016 at 09:37
Dwarvensilver
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[*] posted on 26-11-2016 at 09:43


Agreed, Recrystalization of suspect chemicals is a really great way to clean them up, I had ~20kg of lead nitrate that was poorly opened and used and I think got copper sulfate in it as it had a blue tinge to it even when 100g was dissolved in DDI H20 but the crystallized material from it was snow white. :)



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ecos
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[*] posted on 26-11-2016 at 10:50


easy thing is to put it in a box and make a hot lamp very close to it.
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[*] posted on 26-11-2016 at 14:13


The solubility of ammonium nitrate increases greatly with temperature. "Shock heating" can cause it to melt. The ideal approach would be forced air, ramped in several steps up to 120°C.

[Edited on 27-11-16 by Fulmen]




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[*] posted on 16-1-2018 at 16:26
AN from cold packs or fertilizer


I've taken AN from fertilizer and cold packs and dissolved it in distilled water and, after filtering it, used a hot air cooker to dry it. I've also used a small slow cooker. Both worked well (though I'm not sure that all the water of crystallization was removed).

I've also heated the solution in a large beaker to about 170 degrees C on a lab hotplate. (May not be the safest way, but I watch it carefully, monitoring the temp.) Be careful because the stuff will turn hard as concrete when it cools. I also think one batch reached the AN boiling point of about 210 degrees C: it stopped boiling like water and the liquid AN started to make a popping sound with each bubble and releasing nitrous oxide. (I think.)

The most tedious way, but for my needs, the best way is to avoid water in the first place. I dissolve in methanol, filter, cover the beaker with plastic wrap secured by a large rubber band, and place in the freezer. In about two hours you have a bunch of WATER-FREE AN precipitate. Filter, dry and do it again.

Keep in mind that water is a MUCH better solvent, but such a pain to drive out.

That's my take on it. Any critical comments appreciated.
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