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Thread: Experiment Legality

  1. #1 Experiment Legality 
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    I'm interested in doing the golden rain experiment [Pb(NO₃)₂ + 2KI → PbI₂↓ + 2KNO₃] but have recently become aware of a possible ban of potassium nitrate (2KNO₃) in Canada. I want to know if the ban is legitimate and if so, is the experiment still legal, or should I not try this. Please leave an answer soon.


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  3. #2  
    Bullshit Intolerant PhDemon's Avatar
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    Not sure about Canada, but here in the UK potassium nitrate is on a watch list as it can be used to make explosives, but if you do the experiment on a small scale with dilute solutions the amount you make is too small to worry about. The main problem when I do this in class is the toxicity of the lead salts. Students aren't allowed to do the experiment and I do it as a demo using dilute solutions (0.3g of KI in 100 ml and 0.3g of PbI2 in 100 ml). The lead iodide product needs to be disposed of by a chemical waste company, you can't just chuck it in the bin!


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  4. #3  
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    Alright, thanks for the advice.
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  5. #4  
    Bullshit Intolerant PhDemon's Avatar
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    No problem, if you try it remember to warm the solutions, if you mix them cold you just get yellow gunk. The mixture needs to be hot and allowed to cool slowly so the lead iodide precipitates out as small flakes rather than a huge splodge.
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