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"How do I recycle silver chloride?"



2005

My local high school creates an ounce or more of AgCl and AgBr in the process of their chemistry education. I am a masters level chemist who volunteers there, and was certain I could convert silver chloride into silver nitrate via some chemical means.

I have some experience electroplating nickel onto copper, and have a small power supply. After trying many acids and acid combinations, I have come to conclude I must dissolve the silver chloride in water with ammonia and plate it onto a silver spoon or some such thing. Then make the silver nitrate the school needs with nitric acid.

It would be fun if this process could be safe and simple enough to make a demonstration for the kids. For example it would be neat to squeeze the last electrons out of old batteries by plugging them into some permanent display set up which I could build myself.

Also, a cheap source of silver scrap for making silver nitrate would be a much appreciated suggestion, as it would save the school money.

Krit Hatton
Student Chemist - San Francsco, California, USA
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