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Author Topic: Reactions & A BIG electromagnet  (Read 6658 times)

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Corvettaholic

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Reactions & A BIG electromagnet
« on: May 04, 2005, 12:09:14 PM »

I've always wondered how magnetic fields could effect a chemical reaction. Let me explain further:

So lets take something that I know a tiny a bit about, like if drop a potassium log into a lake. As I understand it, it goes something like this: K + H2O --> KsomethingOsomething + H2. For an atom to scoot over somewhere else, it has to be favorable. Favorable means to me, I'm leaving thermodynamics out of this for the sake of simplicity, that some other atom over there has a nice empty parking spot in its valence electrons. I remember from my old chem class that there's supposed to be something like 8 valence electrons. So oxygen has 2 open spots, and a hydrogen only takes one "parking space" therefore we get water.

Now, back to the original thought. These electrons have to physically move somewhere. They just tag along with their friendly parent nucleus, correct? Well something with a charge is moving. Now lets say I had a giant liquid-nitrogen cooled electromagnet, or maybe something set up as a halbach array so it could be almost mono-pole. Dump that field over a little area and let some 2 chemicals react. My question is, would having a magnetic field of about 3-4 tesla be enough to change the reaction at all? Speed it up, slow it down, prevent it from happening?
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ATMyller

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Re:Reactions & A BIG electromagnet
« Reply #1 on: May 05, 2005, 10:14:28 PM »

No there wouldn't be any effect. NMR spectroscopy is sometimes used for tracking reactions as they proceed and there's no diffrence in reaction products or even rection rates when compared to other measuring methods. With large NMR spectroscope you can get over 10T fields.
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Chemists do it periodically on table.

Corvettaholic

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Re:Reactions & A BIG electromagnet
« Reply #2 on: May 06, 2005, 07:09:13 AM »

Well shucks. So much for that idea. In that case, what else could I use a freaking strong electromagnetic field for? Any fun chemistry experiments I should try?
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Grumples

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Re:Reactions & A BIG electromagnet
« Reply #3 on: May 09, 2005, 03:04:36 PM »

Well, you could always try what I've wanted to do, and drag it along the bottom of a harbor or something.  Pick up everything that people drop- watches, gold dubloons, etc.  ;)  

Or maybe just tin cans and old shoes (and yes, where I come from both of those are magnetic).

You could possibly make some money combing a beach for magnetite (Fe3O4), which is present at almost all beaches, then selling it.  Of course, all you need is a cheap $1 magnet for that.

Either that, or you could install it just underneath a man-hole in a busy street and set up a remote control; then turn it on when a car is parked above it.

by the way, the reaction for K and H20 forms K+, OH-, and H2.

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Borek

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Re:Reactions & A BIG electromagnet
« Reply #4 on: May 10, 2005, 10:10:28 PM »

Well shucks. So much for that idea. In that case, what else could I use a freaking strong electromagnetic field for? Any fun chemistry experiments I should try?

External magnetic field has some effect on electrodeposited thin layers of metals. But whether it is a fancy experiment I doubt ;)
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Corvettaholic

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Re:Reactions & A BIG electromagnet
« Reply #5 on: May 11, 2005, 07:00:38 AM »

Well in that case I think I might just reshift my focus on paramagnetic stuff. See if I can force something to be magnetic, when it normally wouldn't be. I'm not talking making permanent magnets, but trying to convince water it should be magnetic so long as its hanging out within my field. If that works, I'm going to levitate a frog.
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Donaldson Tan

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Re:Reactions & A BIG electromagnet
« Reply #6 on: May 14, 2005, 09:01:16 AM »

feed the frog with iron filings.

 :lamo:
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"Say you're in a [chemical] plant and there's a snake on the floor. What are you going to do? Call a consultant? Get a meeting together to talk about which color is the snake? Employees should do one thing: walk over there and you step on the friggin� snake." - Jean-Pierre Garnier, CEO of Glaxosmithkline, June 2006

corey2

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Re:Reactions & A BIG electromagnet
« Reply #7 on: May 17, 2005, 02:10:43 PM »

to levitate a frog (diamagnetic levitation) you need at least 4T magnetic field. And to reach a stable 4T magnetic field you need a superconductor solenoid, and liquid helium is just too expensive for levitating diamagnetic things.
 :)
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