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Topic: How to neutralize or remove crystalized picric acid??  (Read 8735 times)

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Offline 8bambi4

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How to neutralize or remove crystalized picric acid??
« on: September 14, 2012, 08:49:55 AM »
Hey my fellow chemists, I've got a huge problem and need some information as soon as possible.  I'm working in a Lab in Namibia, the Laboratory is being renovated at some places (quite an old building).  I came accross a picric acid bottle, which already have some crystals underneath the lid.  The lid is a screw cab (Don't know who thought of that!!).  Anyway, I brought this under my Lab-manager's attention about a month ago, and nothing is arranged yet.  The bottle is still there!!  I want to know, how do you neutralize that crystals under the lid.  It's an explosive hazard and I want that bottle removed!   Nobody seems to care around here!!  Nobody seems to see the danger of the situation.  Please, if anybody can help me, it will be much appreciated.

Offline Arkcon

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Re: How to neutralize or remove crystalized picric acid??
« Reply #1 on: September 14, 2012, 09:01:20 AM »
Picric acid is a dangerous explosive, and the laboratory manager should take it's disposal seriously.  That said, it isn't enormously shock sensitive, so is unlikely to detonate just by looking at it angrily ... unlike other dangerous reagents.  Eventually, the lab manager should call the police to ask for their help, or failing that, the military.  Either of those groups should be able to help you if a dangerous explosive were deliberately planted, so they should logically do what they can for this accidental occurrence.  I don't foresee a practical way for you to handle it yourself.
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Offline 408

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Re: How to neutralize or remove crystalized picric acid??
« Reply #2 on: September 14, 2012, 09:05:07 AM »
Metal or plastic lid?
metal:  could be dangerous
plastic: not very dangerous

to be 100% sure in case of metal lid:  dig hole, put bottle in hole, stick a detonator and small boosting charge under it, fill hole with dirt, detonate.

Plastic lid:  do nothing.

I have wrote about picrate sensitivity before

http://www.chemicalforums.com/index.php?topic=50388.msg188267#msg188267

EDIT: my metal cap scenario may be overkill
http://www.sciencemadness.org/talk/viewthread.php?tid=13187&page=3
Look for posts by rosco bodine

if you are worried, just drop it in a big bucket of water and wait for the water to turn yellow.  then dispose properly because picric acid is really toxic.

Offline 8bambi4

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Re: How to neutralize or remove crystalized picric acid??
« Reply #3 on: September 14, 2012, 09:23:04 AM »
Thanks guys!!

@408, the bottle has a plastic lid. I wish I could show you the picture I took of it.

@ Arkcon, Thanks a million!!  I feel a lot better to know there is still people who listens and see the danger I see.  I'll remind the manager again, but I don't know if he is going to do anything, for he has quit as a mananger and are leaving at the end of this month.  So he's already in a "I don't care" mood.  I know the police and millitary don't even have the knowledge to dispose of such an explosive, for this is Africa, Namibia.  People don't work with this type of acid at a regular basis.  But something has to be done, that bottle is an explosive waiting to happen!!

Offline discodermolide

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Re: How to neutralize or remove crystalized picric acid??
« Reply #4 on: September 14, 2012, 09:53:21 AM »
Get in touch with the local Fire Brigade, they can incinerate it in a fireproof compartment. They should be able to do this.
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Offline curiouscat

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Re: How to neutralize or remove crystalized picric acid??
« Reply #5 on: September 14, 2012, 10:46:59 AM »
Thanks guys!!

@408, the bottle has a plastic lid. I wish I could show you the picture I took of it.


In case you didn't know: you can post pictures and photos on here in your post.

Offline Borek

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Re: How to neutralize or remove crystalized picric acid??
« Reply #6 on: September 14, 2012, 12:34:21 PM »
Get in touch with the local Fire Brigade, they can incinerate it in a fireproof compartment

If they have one. What we take for granted can be unheard of in BFE.
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Offline 408

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Re: How to neutralize or remove crystalized picric acid??
« Reply #7 on: September 14, 2012, 02:22:47 PM »
you do not need to worry about that bottle exploding.


Offline 8bambi4

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Re: How to neutralize or remove crystalized picric acid??
« Reply #8 on: September 14, 2012, 04:26:53 PM »
Thanks you all!  I appreciate all your help and input! 

@ curiouscat - thanks, I didn't know you can post pictures, that helps a lot!  I only registered today, so I'm really new at this!  How do you upload a picture?


Offline 8bambi4

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Re: How to neutralize or remove crystalized picric acid??
« Reply #9 on: September 14, 2012, 04:33:41 PM »
I tried uploading the picture, I hope it's not too big or small.  As you can clearly see, under the lid, is some traces of yellow, and some small crystals forming on the bottle under the lid.

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