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March 10 2012 7 10 /03 /March /2012 21:41

I have compiled a list of sources for the elements that are available to the amateur chemist. Copper will be discussed here. 

 

Copper is a soft, reddish-pink metal. It is one of the only metals which has a color other than gray or blue-gray. Copper is pinkish when pure and more reddish-brown when exposed to air. Copper is an excellent electrical conductor and is rather inert. It does not dissolve in non-oxidizing acids if oxygen is not present. Copper is necessary for the human body in small quantities but toxic in large amounts. Copper compounds have a wide range of colors, but many are green to blue. When copper corrodes, it turns green, forming a protective patina of copper hydroxides and carbonates. Many interesting experiments can be performed using copper and its compounds.

 

In element form: Pure copper is used in water pipes and household wiring. Brass contains about 70% copper, bronze about 90%. U.S. nickels are made of 75% copper.

 

In compound form: Bright green-blue copper(II) chloride can be made by mixing copper metal with hydrogen peroxide and hydrochloric acid and evaporating the green solution obtained.

 

Here is my sample of copper. It is a piece of pure copper wire (left), a brass antenna (center), and a copper-containing solder (right).

 

Copper-element.png

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Published by LanthanumK - in Elements
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