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Making Hydrogen

  1. Jul 23, 2008 #1
    Hi guys

    I was looking at a web site and the engineer was working with Gallium and Allaminium oxide, and by accident they put water with it and the reaction produced hydrogen.

    Could anyone expand on this?

  2. jcsd
  3. Jul 23, 2008 #2


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    Staff: Mentor

    No surprise here, aluminum is very reactive. It is just almost always covered with very stable oxide, which makes it water resistant, as long as water is neutral (pH around 7). When it is acidic or basic oxide dissolves and aluminum reacts. Gallium doesn't allow oxide layer creation.

    To some extent that's similar to the famous aluminum and mercury experiment, in which aluminum gets oxidized fast when small amount of mercury is put on its surface. That's why you are not allowed to carry mercury on bard of passenger planes.

    This is an old news now, it hit the headlines last year.
  4. Jul 26, 2008 #3
    To produce Hydrogen, can I put a metal such as Ferum into Hydrochloric Acid and get Hydrogen? I think Ferum and Hydrochloric Acid will react and produce Ferum Chloride and Hydrogen.
  5. Jul 26, 2008 #4


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    Staff Emeritus
    Science Advisor
    Gold Member

    I am assuming that iron is the English equivalent of ferum.

    I believe the answer to your question is, yes.

    IIRC zinc is a good metal for this as well.
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