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Author Topic: How to get silica from diatomaceous earth?  (Read 2554 times)

Offline Bill.D.Katt.

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How to get silica from diatomaceous earth?
« on: 08/06/2011 04:36:25 »
I'm trying to get relatively pure SiO2 from diatomaceous earth, which according to Wikipedia (http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Diatomaceous_earth) is primarily SiO2, Al2O3 and FexOy. H2SO4 would remove the FexOy, but I'm wondering if it would pull the Al2O3 into solution. I suppose I could use HNO3, but I would rather not use it on something like this. Are there any other methods for purifying the silica?


 

Offline Bored chemist

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How to get silica from diatomaceous earth?
« Reply #1 on: 08/06/2011 07:16:51 »
HCl is likely to do a slightly better job because the chloride ion acts as a complexing agent. What do you want the silica for?
 

Offline Bill.D.Katt.

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How to get silica from diatomaceous earth?
« Reply #2 on: 08/06/2011 15:52:27 »
Thanks, I've seen a reaction done where silica and aluminum powder react in a redox reaction akin to thermite (except energetic). I haven't done any calculations yet, which I suppose I should before actually trying the reaction.
 

Offline Bored chemist

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How to get silica from diatomaceous earth?
« Reply #3 on: 08/06/2011 20:27:34 »
A little iron or aluminium wouldn't stop the reaction.
I'd try it with relatively crude (but carefully dried) silica first.
In any event, if your Al isn't pure there's not much point worrying about the SiO2.
 

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How to get silica from diatomaceous earth?
« Reply #3 on: 08/06/2011 20:27:34 »

 

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