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Preservation of hydrogen peroxide

Preservation of hydrogen peroxide is very important. On account of its instability and even explosive tendency it is advisable to use hydrogen peroxide in the form of a solution, a concentration of 30 per cent, being sufficient for most purposes, whilst much more dilute solutions will often satisfy the needs of experiments. Small traces of alkali, such as may be dissolved from glass, and of such impurities as iron oxide and even dust will greatly accelerate the decomposition of the substance, the stability of the solutions decreasing with concentration. In order to avoid contact with glass, the bottles are frequently lined and stoppered with paraffin wax. A very small quantity of an acid is frequently added as a preservative, sulphuric acid being commonly chosen, but other acids are effective, and certain organic substances have been found to exert a marked preservative action, one of the most effective being acetanilide.

It is stated that pure anhydrous hydrogen peroxide does not decompose at 0° C.

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