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Copper Sulfate Crystals

Submitted by sat on 23 November 2016

In Brief:

Recycling and reuse of chemicals can be considered if safe and appropriate to minimise the generation of chemical waste. It is often possible for waste from one process to be used for another.

In the school science laboratory copper (II) sulfate crystals made by students can be reused to make new copper (II) sulfate solutions.

Depending on the size of the crystals you may need to crush them into smaller pieces to allow them to easily dissolve in the solvent (water). Solutions made from recycled crystals may contain impurities if using technical grade chemicals or dust or other contaminants from the environment from the crystal making process. These impurities may be an issue and can be filtered out before use. Solutions made from recycled copper (II) sulfate crystals would not be suitable for senior analytical experiments.

Preparation of copper (II) sulfate crystals for reuse:

Safety:

Science ASSIST recommends a risk assessment be conducted prior to the use of any chemicals, and all appropriate control measures be identified and implemented. Science ASSIST has developed a one page risk assessment template, see Risk Assessment Template.

Science ASSIST has previously answered some related questions see:

Formation of crystals

SOP: Hazardous waste

Laboratory Chemicals and Waste Management/Setup

References:

1'Copper sulfate' Safety Data Sheet, Chem-Supply website, https://www.chemsupply.com.au/documents/CL0681CH2B.pdf (March 2014)

'3.5 Solutions and crystals' Basic Science & Technology website. 3.5 Solutions and crystals - Basic Science & Technology (Accessed November 2016)

Jones, J. 'Crystals' Royal Australian Chemical Institute website, https://www.raci.org.au/document/item/1862 (Accessed November 2016)