Science, Tech, Math › Science How to Make Gases Safely for Chemistry Share Flipboard Email Print Special glassware makes gas collection easier and safer. Benjamin Taguemount / Getty Images Science Chemistry Projects & Experiments Basics Chemical Laws Molecules Periodic Table Scientific Method Biochemistry Physical Chemistry Medical Chemistry Chemistry In Everyday Life Famous Chemists Activities for Kids Abbreviations & Acronyms Biology Physics Geology Astronomy Weather & Climate By Anne Marie Helmenstine, Ph.D. Chemistry Expert Ph.D., Biomedical Sciences, University of Tennessee at Knoxville B.A., Physics and Mathematics, Hastings College Dr. Helmenstine holds a Ph.D. in biomedical sciences and is a science writer, educator, and consultant. She has taught science courses at the high school, college, and graduate levels. our editorial process Facebook Facebook Twitter Twitter Anne Marie Helmenstine, Ph.D. Updated April 02, 2020 You can use common chemistry lab chemicals and equipment to prepare several gases. Please make sure you are familiar with the use and functioning of the laboratory equipment you use, are aware of the characteristics of the substances (toxicity, flammability, explosivity, etc.), and take proper safety precautions. Use a ventilation hood (fume cupboard) and keep flammable gases away from heat or flame. Helpful Equipment for Preparing Gases Many gases can be prepared using nothing more complicated than a length of tubing, but other items that are handy to have include: Conical flaskThistle funnelDelivery tubePneumatic troughBeehiveBurner or hot plate See examples of how glassware looks. You may wish to consult more detailed instructions if you are unclear how to proceed. Please remember, many common lab gases are flammable and/or toxic! Gas Reagents Method Collection Reaction AmmoniaNH3 Ammonium chlorideCalcium hydroxide Gently heats a mixture of ammonium chloride and calcium hydroxide in water. Upward displacement of air in a hood. Ca(OH)2 + 2NH4Cl → 2NH3 + CaCl2 + 2H2O Carbon DioxideCO2 Calcium carbonate (marble chips)5 M Hydrochloric acid Add 5 M hydrochloric acid to 5 - 10 g marble chips. Upward displacement of air in a hood. 2HCl + CaCO3 → CO2 + CaCl2 + H2O ChlorineCl2 Potassium permanganateConc. Hydrochloric acid Add concentrated hydrochloric acid dropwise onto a few potassium permanganate crystals (in the flask). Upward displacement of air in a hood. 6HCl + 2KMnO4 + 2H+ → 3Cl2 + 2MnO2 + 4H2O + 2K+ HydrogenH2 Zinc (granulated)5 M Hydrochloric acid Add 5 M hydrochloric acid to 5 - 10 g granulated zinc pieces. Collect over water. 2HCl + Zn → H2 + ZnCl2 Hydrogen ChlorideHCl Sodium chlorideConc. Sulfuric acid Slowly adds concentrated sulfuric acid to solid sodium chloride. Displacement of air in a hood. 2NaCl + H2SO4 → Na2SO4 + 2HCl MethaneCH4 Sodium acetate (anhydrous)Soda lime Mix 1 part sodium acetate with 3 parts soda lime. Heat in a dry pyrex test tube or flask. Collect over water. CH3COONa + NaOH → CH4 + Na2CO3 NitrogenN2 AmmoniaCalcium hypochlorite (bleaching powder) Shake 20 g calcium hypochlorite into 100 mL water for several minutes, then filter. Add 10 mL cons. ammonia and heat mixture. Use extreme caution! Chloramine and explosive nitrogen trichloride may be produced. Displacement of air. 2NH3 + 3CaOCl2 → N2 + 3H2O + 3CaCl2 NitrogenN2 AirLighted Phosphorus (or heated Fe or Cu) Invert a bell jar over lighted phosphorus. Oxygen and phosphorus combine to form phosphorus pentoxide, which is absorbed by the water over which the bell jar stands (may be violent reaction), producing phosphoric acid and leaving the nitrogen behind. Removal of oxygen. 5 O2 + 4 P → P4O10 Nitrogen DioxideNO2 Copper (turnings)10 M Nitric acid Add concentrated nitric acid to 5 - 10 g copper. Upward displacement of air in a hood. Cu + 4HNO3 → 2NO2 + Cu(NO3)2 + 2H2O Nitrogen MonoxideNO Copper (turnings)5 M Nitric acid Add 5 M nitric acid to 5 - 10 g copper. Collect over water. 3Cu + 8HNO3 → 2NO + 3Cu(NO3)2 + 4H2O Nitrous OxideN2O Sodium nitrateAmmonium sulfate Mix 10 g powdered sodium nitrate and 9 g ammonium sulfate. Heat well. Displacement of air. NH4NO3 → N2O + 2H2O OxygenO2 6% Hydrogen peroxideManganese dioxide (catalyst) Add hydrogen peroxide to about 5 g of MnO2. Collect over water. 2H2O2 → 2H2O + O2 OxygenO2 Potassium permanganate Heat solid KMnO4. Collect over water. 2KMnO4 → K2MnO4 + MnO2 + O2 Sulfur DioxideSO2 Sodium sulfite (or sodium bisulfite)2 M Hydrochloric acid Add dilute hydrochloric acid to 5 - 10 g sodium sulfite (or bisulfite). Upward displacement of air in a hood. 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