Difference between revisions of "Main Page"

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# [[Water|Distilled Water]] '''← Current Target'''
# [[Water|Distilled Water]] '''← Current Target'''
# [[Sea salt]]
# [[Sea salt]]
# [[Ethanol]]
# [[Potato]]
# [[Vinegar]]
# [[Copper]]
# [[Copper]]
# [[Zinc]]
# [[Zinc]]

Revision as of 02:44, 15 September 2019


Current Goal: Sulfuric Acid


Sulfuric acid is an essential industrial chemical. It is vital for production of many compounds. Its importance to modern chemistry cannot be overstated, so producing some of it needs to be an early goal.


The most accessible catalytic method of producing sulfuric acid seems to be the so-called copper chloride method. Copper chloride, however, is not NOWA, so we must produce that first.

  1. Distilled Water ← Current Target
  2. Sea salt
  3. Potato
  4. Copper
  5. Zinc
  6. Wet cell battery
  7. Gelatin
  8. Gelatin salt bridge
  9. Electrolysis cell
  10. Chlorine (and sodium hydroxide)
  11. Copper (II) chloride
  12. Sulfur dioxide
  13. Sulfuric acid (and hydrochloric acid)

Next Goal


  1. What is NOWA-CL?
    There's a video on that question.
    NOWA stands for Naturally Occurring Widely Available. The CL stands for Chemical Library. This project is about documenting the technological steps involved in developing a library of chemical compounds that can be made with simple equipment from materials that are naturally occurring and widely available. There's no need to order chemicals from supply houses, or obtain them from over-the-counter products. Once a chemical has been produced in quantity from naturally occurring widely available sources, we add it to our "library". Then we can use that material to produce new materials. The important part is to demonstrate that they can be produced from these sources with minimal equipment: what the chemical industry refers to as "small-scale" or "laboratory" synthesis.
    The documentary part of this project will include two main products: the text on this wiki and the videos on YouTube.
  2. So it's a recipe book where people can learn how to make chemicals?
    Definitely not. See the warning on our front page. Chemistry equipment can be dangerous by itself. Many materials (including the ones we produce here) are dangerous: toxic, flammable, corrosive, etc. These operations should not be repeated or reproduced except by people who are sufficiently qualified to do the work and handle the materials safely.
  3. Isn't there a kind of chicken-and-egg problem? What is your equipment made of?
    That's a good point. We assume that the equipment itself (glassware, supports, heat sources, etc) are available at the beginning. The equipment itself may not be naturally occurring, but it's widely available, accessible, and relatively cheap. The purpose of this project is to demonstrate that the process is the important part, not the chemicals you start with. It's the knowledge, not the resources, that enable the science.
  4. There are already too many wikis out there. Why start a new one? (aka Why not just put this information in Wikipedia?)
    1. Aggregating and disseminating this information was the purpose of this project, and wikis are an excellent way to do both of those things, so that part is straightforward.
    2. Wikipedia is specifically not a textbook, guidebook, or instruction manual. That means it isn't appropriate to build out those entries with much of the data in this wiki. To whatever degree it makes sense for both projects, sharing of data is welcomed and encouraged. NB: A lot of the numeric data in this wiki comes directly from either Wikipedia or its underlying sources.


ANY pursuit can be dangerous to the unprepared, inexperienced, or ignorant. That is definitely the case with the experiments, extractions, and syntheses this project entails. Do not repeat them unless you are sufficiently informed, prepared, and equipped to handle these materials and do the work shown.


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