Skip to main content

Ammonium dichromate volcano

Description

Ammonium dichromate is ignited and starts to decompose exothermically. It resembles a volcanic eruption, producing sparks, 'ash', steam and nitrogen.

Type of Activity

:
demonstration

Audience

:
Teacher

Age Group

:
14 to 18 years

Credits

:
This is an experiment from the Practical Chemistry project, developed by the Nuffield Foundation and the Royal Society of Chemistry.
ammonium-dichromate-volca...



Apparatus Chemicals

Eye protection

The teacher will require:

Access to a fume cupboard for Method A (Note 1)

Bunsen burner

Heat resistant mat

Large spatula

Large metal tray (Method A)

Tongs (Method A)

Watch glass (Method A)

Wooden splints (Method A) (Note 2)

Conical flask (1000 cm3) (Method B)

Glass or mineral wool (Method B)

The quantities of chemicals given below are for one demonstration:

Ammonium dichromate(Vl) (VERY TOXIC, EXPLOSIVE, DANGEROUS FOR THE ENVIRONMENT), 3-10 g

Ethanol (HIGHLY FLAMMABLE) or Industrial denatured alcohol (IDA) (HIGHLY FLAMMABLE, HARMFUL)

Cobalt chloride paper (TOXIC) (Note 3)

Silica gel granules

Refer to Health & Safety and Technical notes section below for additional information.

 



 






Ammonium dichromate is ignited and starts to decompose exothermically. It resembles a volcanic eruption, producing sparks, 'ash', steam and nitrogen.

ADDITIONAL INFORMATION

This is a resource from the Practical Chemistry project, developed by the Nuffield Foundation and the Royal Society of Chemistry. This collection of over 200 practical activities demonstrates a wide range of chemical concepts and processes. Each activity contains comprehensive information for teachers and technicians, including full technical notes and step-by-step procedures. Practical Chemistry activities accompany Practical Physics and Practical Biology.