How to Make Fenton's Reagent

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Fenton’s reagent is the name given to the reaction of a solution of hydrogen peroxide and a ferrous iron catalyst. Companies often use Fenton’s reagent to reduce the levels of organic contaminants through the chemical oxidation that occurs as the solution produces hydroxyl radicals. Making your own Fenton’s reagent can allow you to experiment with removing chlorinated organics and similar organic contaminates in the safety of your own laboratory.

    Add buffers to your solution to lower the pH level between 3 and 5. Test the pH several times to ensure that the solution’s acidity has equalized.

    Pour a solution of ferrous sulfate (FeSO4) into the solution you wish to oxidize with the Fenton’s reagent.

    Slowly add hydrogen peroxide (H2O2) to the solution. Check the pH and adjust the rate at which you add the hydrogen peroxide in order to keep the solution’s pH between 3 and 6.

    Things You'll Need

    • Buffers rated pH 3-6
    • Solution of ferrous sulfate
    • Hydrogen peroxide

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