How To: Make silver chloride for a photochemistry test

Make silver chloride for a photochemistry test

How to Make silver chloride for a photochemistry test

Watch this science video tutorial from Nurd Rage on how to make silver chloride for a photochemistry test. They show the chemistry of photography using silver chloride that they make themselves from table salt and silver nitrate.

Silver chloride has the interesting property that it reacts to light. This photosensitive chemical will decompose into dark silver powder and chlorine.

To make it, just mix one gram of silver nitrate and half a gram of salt in separate quantities of water. Then mix the two solutions with shaking, this forms silver chloride. Then let it stand for five minutes. This will cause the silver chloride to settle to the bottom. After five minutes pour off the extra liquid. Spread out the silver in a layer onto a piece of paper. Let it dry in darkness as you don't want the light to expose it before you're ready. Once it is dry, place a stencil or template of something you want "photographed" over the silver chloride. You might want to weigh it down with a piece of glass.

When you're ready, shine a strong light onto it for ten minutes or so. The silver chloride will darken in the areas that are exposed to light. Remove the glass and template and you will have a negative photo of what you placed over it.

The image won't keep forever, eventually the whole thing will darken.

This is of course a very simple experiment and modern photography is far superior.

Brought to you by one of WonderHowTo's favorite scientists NurdRage.

2 Comments

Very informative video. I enjoy viewing most Nurd Rage videos after learning about a new chemical reaction from my Advanced Chemisrty books. I think that these videos are an excellent resource to all chemistry students or any curious individual. Keep up the excellent work!! :)

I would also like to add that since the same white precipitate is formed when silver nitrate solution is added to a solution of ANY CHLORIDE, this reaction is used TO TEST FOR A CHLORIDE.

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