Dangerous Lecture Experiments


ALTHOUGH it is no part of my duty to teach chemistry, I have on several occasions had to perform an experiment which Mr. Marle quotes (p. 428) as being dangerous, viz. the collection of hydrogen from the action of sodium on water. I can fully endorse his warning. Twice a violent explosion took place; but I found that if the piece of sodium is carefully cleaned so that all its surfaces are bright, and cold water used, the experiment can be carried out in safety. I do not know if these important details have found their way into the practical manuals in use in chemical laboratories. If not, I trust that this experiment is not one that beginners are directed to make.

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HILL, M. Dangerous Lecture Experiments. Nature 82, 458 (1910). https://doi.org/10.1038/082458e0

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