Bromine jar growing strange crystals... - (Nov/03/2012 )
I dont get why this jar has started growing crystals on the outside.
Its Bromine 99% (purissim) inside.
Could it be a leaking gas that crystalises on the outside?
What to do with it?
The jar is about 5-7 years old.
It's in a metal can, and the crystals are a result of small amounts of bromine leaking and reacting with the metal, forming the metal bromide. The bromine is probably still good, and you could still use it. You probably want to replace the metal can.
But isn't this really toxic?
Can I just whipe of the bromine crystals from the outside and dispose it?
I see that I should use glasses, mouthfilter, coat and nitrile gloves when handling it... in the cupboard.
Probably I'll just scrape of the crystals and save them in a separate container.
I'd replace the whole metal jar and also try to seal the bottle inside and work under a fume-hood. Or if you don't need the bromide, dispose of as hazardous waste following your lab regulations for such stuff.
As Bromine is quite corrosive and reacts with many materials (plastics, metals), has a low vapour pressure and is toxic for humans and many other organisms, it's not easy to store it long time without leakage (e.g. in a glass bottle with a plastic lid that starts to corrode after some time) and therefore it's questionable if you should store especially larger amounts in your lab or in your stock of chemicals (which is hopefully ventilated).
Thanks for the replies.
I recently got in charge of a school laboratory that had been left in "this state".
My theory is that the lab was set up by an ambitious chemist but was later left to... degenerate.
The last teacher I´ve talked to had little idea about the chemicals, safety equipment, waste disposal... basically he was not using the lab.
Since we are soon facing an inspection I will have to present this decision to my superiors: Retain the lab, but in good order, and perhaps do more chemistry education, or "minimise" the lab so that it allows for the basic chemistry of a high school without presenting unneccesary hazards to (unprepared) teachers and students.
Still though, from what he told me there was no waste disposal plan :/
OK so I got a company to come and get the leaking jar...
Ohh.. I also got the responsibility to manage the lab from now on, in part thanks to handling this!!