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Recipe of the Week – Week 21: Bromine

Continuing our new series of chemical recipes, we bring you week 21 – bromine  (Br2).

Remember that when preparing any of our recipes, you should:

  • Always wear appropriate PPE including eye protection and gloves.
  • Always add acid to water (never water to acid).
  • Use a fume cupboard.
  • Always carry out a risk assessment when using any chemicals.
  • Follow all recommended safety procedures and adhere to the label instructions, hazard warnings and local legislations.

What is bromine?

Bromine is a deep-red, oily liquid with a sharp smell. It is toxic and is used in many areas such as agricultural chemicals, dyestuffs, insecticides, pharmaceuticals and chemical intermediates. Some uses are being phased out for environmental reasons, but new uses continue to be found.

Bromine compounds can be used as flame retardants. They are added to furniture foam, plastic casings for electronics and textiles to make them less flammable. However, the use of bromine as a flame retardant has been phased out in the USA because of toxicity concerns.
Organobromides are used in halon fire extinguishers that are used to fight fires in places like museums, aeroplanes and tanks. Silver bromide is a chemical used in film photography.
Before leaded fuels were phased out, bromine was used to prepare 1,2-di-bromoethane, which was an anti-knock agent.

Click here to view the PDF recipe card to either save to your local files or add it as a bookmark to your browser.

Scan the QR codes for classroom experiments to follow with your safe and prepared bromine.