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Sulphuric Acid on the WebTM Technical Manual DKL Engineering, Inc.

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Properties - Hydrogen Peroxide
December 20, 2001

Introduction
General
Physical Data
Stability
Toxicology
Fire Hazards
Explosion Hazards
Transport Information
Personal Protection
Associated Links


Introduction

Hydrogen Peroxide is one of the most versatile and environmentally compatible oxidizing agents.

General

To follow

Physical Data

Appearance: Hydrogen peroxide solutions are clear, colourless and water-like in appearance.

Concentration 20 wt% 50 wt%
Boiling Point 104°C (219°F) 114°C (237°F)
Freezing point -15°C (5°F) -52°C (-62°F)
Apparent pH 2.7-3.2 1.1-1.6
Active oxygen content 9.4% 23.5%
Specific gravity (20°C/4°C) 1.07 1.20
Density @ 20°C 1071 kg/m³ (8.4 lb/USgal) 1198 kg/m³ (10.0 lb/USgal)
Loss in % assay, 1 yr, 25° C <0.4% <1.0%

Stability

To follow

Toxicology

To follow³

Fire Hazards

Hydrogen peroxide will not burn but it can start fires and serve as a source of oxygen.  Contact with organics such as wood, paper, grass, etc. can cause fire or detonation.  For example, 70% H2O2 coming in contact with gloves made of leather will ignite in less than one minute.  Fire hazards increase with higher strengths of H2O2. 

Storage facilities should be design to avoid possible contact with organic materials. Spills should be contained in a bunded area and flushed away promptly with plenty of water.

In the event of a fire, only water is required to fight the fire.  Storage tanks and containers should be kept cool to reduce the rate of H2O2 decomposition.

Explosion Hazards

Hydrogen peroxide solutions are not explosive in the sense of propagating detonation.  The explosion hazard is the result of uncontrolled decomposition of hydrogen peroxide.

Hydrogen peroxide decomposes over time so all storage tanks should be vented.   Normally the rate of decomposition is slow but can be accelerated by contaminates entering the solution or by application of heat.

Contamination of hydrogen peroxide can result in self-accelerating decomposition, a process which generates heat.  If the heat is not dissipated fast enough to the environment, it will contribute to the accelerated decomposition of hydrogen peroxide.  Hydrogen peroxide storage tanks are never insulated for this reason.  For every 10ºC rise in temperature, there is a 2.2 fold increase in the rate of hydrogen peroxide decomposition.

Transport Information

Polyethylene drums 56.8 liter  (15 gallons)
113.6 liter (30 gallons)
208.2 liter (55 gallons)

Bulk shipments: Available in tank trucks and tank cars

Hydrogen peroxide above 8% concentration is classified as an "Oxidizer" by the Department of Transportation and all containers must carry the yellow DOT label.

Personal Protection