Oxide Films responsible for the Tints on Heated Copper


MUCH has been published on the tints of heated copper, but disagreement prevails regarding the oxide responsible for the colours; Dunn (Proc. Roy. Soc., 111 [A], 211; 1926) apparently attributes them to cuprous oxide, and Constable (Ibid., 115 [A], 583; 1927) to a “veneer of cupric oxide”. Recently the oxide films have been isolated from their basis, the metal being dissolved from below by anodic treatment in concentrated potassium sulphate solution; the oxide films, thus undermined, peel off in curling flakes, which retain the grooves and ridges left by the abrasive treatment used to clean the copper before oxidation. The thicker films can also be removed mechanically.

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EVANS, U. Oxide Films responsible for the Tints on Heated Copper. Nature 123, 16 (1929). https://doi.org/10.1038/123016a0

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