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Author Topic: What does Ozone really smell like?  (Read 32655 times)

Offline tommya300

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What does Ozone really smell like?
« on: 28/08/2010 08:19:46 »
.
I understand OZone is produced by electrical sparks.
O3 ... oxygen gains a loosely bonded oxygen atom.

How do I know that I do not smell the oxide of the material that is used to produce the spark?

In nature Thunder Storms, lightening produced OZone, how do I distinguish the fresh small of the plants aromatic camouflage?


.
« Last Edit: 28/08/2010 18:38:41 by tommya300 »


 

Offline RD

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« Last Edit: 28/08/2010 19:57:25 by RD »
 

Offline tommya300

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« Last Edit: 28/08/2010 20:23:33 by tommya300 »
 

Offline wolfekeeper

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What does Ozone really smell like?
« Reply #3 on: 29/08/2010 07:10:17 »
According to the wikipedia it smells kinda like bleach.
 

Offline Geezer

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What does Ozone really smell like?
« Reply #4 on: 29/08/2010 07:42:21 »
My "lazer" printer smells like ammonia.
 

Offline Bored chemist

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What does Ozone really smell like?
« Reply #5 on: 29/08/2010 10:40:09 »
Shouldn't a laZer printer smell of oSone?
 

Offline tommya300

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What does Ozone really smell like?
« Reply #6 on: 29/08/2010 11:25:00 »
google Fushigi
 

Offline lightarrow

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What does Ozone really smell like?
« Reply #7 on: 29/08/2010 13:12:32 »
How do I know that I do not smell the oxide of the material that is used to produce the spark?
In nature Thunder Storms, lightening produced OZone, how do I distinguish the fresh small of the plants aromatic camouflage?
Take some electronic device like: portable stereo with cd reader, notebook pc, voice recorders, radio or any device which you are sure there is some (even small) component which operates at high voltage or that can create in some way, even very localized, high fields. Remove any battery/power unit from it, if you can, and let the device/s stay, open, for some time, better if you blow air in it, so that air inside the device is changed with new one; then try to smell the device' inside. Then put batteries in, close the device and let it operate for some minute. Then open it (maybe uncover the batteries' compartment) and try to smell it again. If you perceive a different smell, it's O3.

It's possible you perceive the smell even as soon as you take the device the first time to remove the batteries. It's the same smell you perceive sometimes in a room full of operating electronic devices.
« Last Edit: 29/08/2010 20:55:12 by lightarrow »
 

Offline Bored chemist

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What does Ozone really smell like?
« Reply #8 on: 29/08/2010 15:02:21 »
Why on earth would those things (portable stereo with cd reader, notebook pc, voice recorders, radio) generate ozone?
 

Offline lightarrow

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What does Ozone really smell like?
« Reply #9 on: 29/08/2010 20:53:11 »
Why on earth would those things (portable stereo with cd reader, notebook pc, voice recorders, radio) generate ozone?
Because of high values of electric field in air. It's not necessary to have a discharge: air is continuously bombarded from cosmic particles/radioactive material's rays and so it's normally ionized. High fields can accelerate the ions enough to break O2 in atoms and so produce O3.

Or did you mean why *just those* things? (More difficult answer  :))
« Last Edit: 29/08/2010 20:57:18 by lightarrow »
 

Offline tommya300

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What does Ozone really smell like?
« Reply #10 on: 30/08/2010 00:00:43 »
 

Offline lightarrow

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What does Ozone really smell like?
« Reply #11 on: 30/08/2010 00:15:07 »
Yes, but "corona discharge" is not a "real" discharge. In case you have this last one, the ozone apparatus which exploit this procedure will be damaged very soon.

http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Corona_discharge

Corona discharge, at low currents, can be so faint to be invisible at the naked eye.
« Last Edit: 30/08/2010 00:18:12 by lightarrow »
 

Offline Geezer

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What does Ozone really smell like?
« Reply #12 on: 30/08/2010 05:54:06 »
Because of high values of electric field in air.

Lightarrow,

Is it the potential gradient that is most important? I think that's the same as the dielectric stress, and in this situation the dielectric is air. If that is true, then ozone can be produced even at low voltages.
 

Offline Bored chemist

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What does Ozone really smell like?
« Reply #13 on: 30/08/2010 10:29:40 »
Those things don't have high field gradients; certainly not high enough to generate ozone. Photocopiers and laser printers do (because they have corona discharge electrodes in them. An old fashioned television might generate ozone because of the high voltage used to accelerate electrons in the CRT.
Why would, for example, a voice recorder need a high voltage?

Also, these things don't make ozone; if they did I could smell it.
 

Offline lightarrow

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What does Ozone really smell like?
« Reply #14 on: 30/08/2010 13:37:15 »
Because of high values of electric field in air.

Lightarrow,

Is it the potential gradient that is most important? I think that's the same as the dielectric stress, and in this situation the dielectric is air. If that is true, then ozone can be produced even at low voltages.
Exactly. Even a low potential wire, but which has a small radius, have high fields near its surface.
 

Offline Geezer

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What does Ozone really smell like?
« Reply #15 on: 30/08/2010 16:02:16 »
Those things don't have high field gradients; certainly not high enough to generate ozone.

Isn't it just a case of the dielectric stress? In an air-spaced capacitor the gradient can be quite large even at small potentials if the distance between the plates is small enough. Of course, that probably won't produce a significant amount of ozone.
 

Offline Bored chemist

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What does Ozone really smell like?
« Reply #16 on: 30/08/2010 17:42:43 »
And my other point i.e.
"Also, these things don't make ozone; if they did I could smell it."
In any event, why do they use high voltages to make ozone if they could use low voltages?
 

Offline Geezer

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What does Ozone really smell like?
« Reply #17 on: 30/08/2010 17:54:43 »
And my other point i.e.
"Also, these things don't make ozone; if they did I could smell it."
In any event, why do they use high voltages to make ozone if they could use low voltages?


It would appear that they do produce ozone, just not very much, so it may not be detectable with the average hooter. If you want to produce a lot you'll certainly do better with high voltages acting over large volumes of air.
 

Offline lightarrow

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What does Ozone really smell like?
« Reply #18 on: 30/08/2010 19:25:59 »
It's the same idea I have: to produce large amounts of O3, you have to use large surfaces and so they cannot have high curvature, so they need high voltages to generate high fields.
 

Offline Bored chemist

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What does Ozone really smell like?
« Reply #19 on: 30/08/2010 19:53:40 »
Another interesting point is that making ozone takes a lot of energy. If my watch, for example, was making ozone the batteries would go flat rather quickly.
Also, ozone production is not the only way in which this sort of discharge wastes power.



There are two things needed to sustain an electrical discharge. One is a field gradient big enough to ionise the air in the first place; the second is a big enough field to accelerate those ions and get them to produce secondary ionisation.
The latter is lacking in this case.

"It would appear that they do produce ozone, just not very much, so it may not be detectable with the average hooter."
Is at odds with "then try to smell the device' inside. Then put batteries in, close the device and let it operate for some minute. Then open it (maybe uncover the batteries' compartment) and try to smell it again. If you perceive a different smell, it's O3.

It's possible you perceive the smell even as soon as you take the device the first time to remove the batteries. It's the same smell you perceive sometimes in a room full of operating electronic devices."
Also, the dominant smell of "electronics" is usually a mixture of compounds but benzoquinone is the big contributor.
It doesn't smell much  like ozone.

Here's a simple question.
Do you have any evidence for the production of ozone by electrical circuits running at less than 100 V?
 

Offline Geezer

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What does Ozone really smell like?
« Reply #20 on: 30/08/2010 20:36:57 »
Here's a simple question.
Do you have any evidence for the production of ozone by electrical circuits running at less than 100 V?


Not really, but I suspect anything with an electric motor (with a commutator and brushes) would be a good candidate.
 

Offline tommya300

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What does Ozone really smell like?
« Reply #21 on: 31/08/2010 09:52:18 »
From what I gather here, any particular, make and break" of an electrical circuit always produce some small quantity of Ozone?

 How can it be distinguished that it is an Ozone smell and not the smell from the oxidation of the materials used for these contact switching heat producing items?

 How do I know that outgases from the insulation is not the smell?

In my simple thinking,  I can see is maybe, a controlled environment within an only  material, glass insulated housing, bottle, using gold electrodes or non oxidizing material and a strong but non volatile oxygen atmosphere.

Can a static charge, like rubbing two balloons together produce some small samples of ozone?

 Wouldn't the ozone's loosely bonded atom release, as soon as it is in a field of some gaseous compound, and attach to that compound, that can oxidize?
« Last Edit: 31/08/2010 10:21:30 by tommya300 »
 

Offline Geezer

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What does Ozone really smell like?
« Reply #22 on: 31/08/2010 19:51:30 »
According to the font of all knowledge (Wikipedia)

"Most people can detect about 0.01 ppm of ozone in air where it has a very specific sharp odor somewhat resembling chlorine bleach."

The pong from my printer smells more like ammonia to me, but it might be ozone I'm smelling. The typical pong from electronic equipment seems a lot different to me, and some of it might be the secondary effects of oxidation caused by ozone as Tommy suggests.
 

Offline lightarrow

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What does Ozone really smell like?
« Reply #23 on: 31/08/2010 21:36:42 »
Another interesting point is that making ozone takes a lot of energy.
*How much* ozone takes a lot of energy? Are you talking of kilograms?  :)
Certainly, making some molecules won't require a lot of energy.

Quote
There are two things needed to sustain an electrical discharge. One is a field gradient
Why would you need a "field gradient"? Maybe you intended "potential" gradient?

Quote
big enough to ionise the air in the first place; the second is a big enough field to accelerate those ions and get them to produce secondary ionisation.
The latter is lacking in this case.
You only need a big enough field for both things.

Quote
"It would appear that they do produce ozone, just not very much, so it may not be detectable with the average hooter."
Is at odds with "then try to smell the device' inside. Then put batteries in, close the device and let it operate for some minute. Then open it (maybe uncover the batteries' compartment) and try to smell it again. If you perceive a different smell, it's O3.

It's possible you perceive the smell even as soon as you take the device the first time to remove the batteries. It's the same smell you perceive sometimes in a room full of operating electronic devices."
Also, the dominant smell of "electronics" is usually a mixture of compounds but benzoquinone is the big contributor.
I really didn't know it. Would you explain better how it's produced?

Quote
Here's a simple question.
Do you have any evidence for the production of ozone by electrical circuits running at less than 100 V?
No. But as I wrote, it's not really the voltage what counts, but its gradient, that is, the field. A difference of potential of 100 V with a separation of 1 m means an average field  of only 100/1 = 100 V/m while the same difference of potential with a separation of 0.1mm means a field of 100/(0.1*10-3) = 106 V/m.
 

Offline Bored chemist

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What does Ozone really smell like?
« Reply #24 on: 31/08/2010 22:06:31 »
"*How much* ozone takes a lot of energy? Are you talking of kilograms?"
Enough to smell it. About 0.1 ppm.

Also, ozone is fiercely reactive stuff so the idea that it would build up in electrical equipment is rather odd. It tends to react with the first thing it touches or just decomposes anyway.

Benzoquinone is produced mainly from the breakdown of phenolic plastics, particularly when they get warm. Many, if not most circuit boards are made from paper bonded with phenolic resins.
 

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What does Ozone really smell like?
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