Making copper sulfate
I let the reaction run overnight. I was expecting to see an even darker blue solution form, but it didn’t. I used some telephone hookup wire for electrodes, and I should have use something thicker, especially for the bottom electrode. The exposed copper wire at the bottom of the jar no longer existed (or it corroded and is sitting on the bottom of the jar). Stupid mistake that I should have known better than to make, The copper for copper sulfate has to come from somewhere… So I am using a wire from an appliance power cord, and am also using a 12v power supply.
I’m making a batch now, and getting results.
This is what I will use on my tomato plants to control fungus. But use CAUTION! It is a hazardous chemical and must be used with caution. And clean all fruit before eating it.
I’m using the directions found here: http://www.scienceforums.com/topic/21314-magnesium-sulfate-electrolysis/#entry314037
But I had to make some minor substitutions. I haven’t blown up anything, and the fire dept. is still resting easy. For now.
Here are the differences:
I am using a 3v power supply. I’m sure I have a 5v or 9v, but the 3v was handy.
I’m using copper wire for both electrodes. I don’t have a graphite electrode I can improvise.
A coffee filter seems to work fine.
It took about 1/2 hr before I started noticing a blue color in the solution near the bottom of the jar. It is getting a deeper blue over time. I’ll let it run overnight. That is the copper sulfate forming.
So, all it takes is some plain epsom salt (magnesium sulfate), copper wire, a jar, a few rubber bands to hold the wires to the outside of the jar, a power supply or batteries, some pure water, clamps to hold the filter in place (do not let the filter hang over the lid of the jar, or the solution will wick over the top of the jar and you will have a mess to clean up. Use clamps (clothes pins work) to hold the filter in place on the INSIDE of the jar).