Know your chemical weapons

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16 Responses to “Know your chemical weapons”

  1. glatt1 says:

    I haven’t smelled flypaper in 30 years.  I wonder how many people today know what flypaper smells like?

  2. Jeffrey Bell says:

    Phosgene is also used in semiconductor manufacturing.  Whenever the fire alarm goes off, those guys from the clean room are the first ones out the building.

    • fuzzyfuzzyfungus says:

      They seem to use all kinds of dreadful stuff for semiconductor manufacturing. Samsung can’t seem to stop spilling hydrofuoric acid on people, and I’m told that some processes have the… pleasure… of using Chlorine trifluoride for equipment cleaning purposes(which, in fairness, is a task that it probably performs with zeal and efficiency practically unheard of among lesser compounds)…

      • scruffylookingnerfherder says:

         I know Intel uses at least 3 people to move certain chemicals, including spotters who clear the hallway. That’s some caustic stuff.

      • ldobe says:

        Quoted from Wikipedia
        Chlorine trifluoride is “hypergolic with such things as cloth, wood, and test engineers, not to mention asbestos, sand, and water”

        Holy crap.  It’s the kind of stuff that makes you explode if it gets on you.  Now that’s a chemical weapon…. But is it as hazardous as dioxygen difluoride (FOOF)?

        • jandrese says:

          Dioxygen Diflouride is at least so unstable that it will never travel too far from where it was manufactured.  Chlorine Triflouride might be more dangerous because people are actually using it regularly, it’s not confined to chemistry lab testbenches. 

  3. fuzzyfuzzyfungus says:

    Curiously, mustard gas started leading a secret double life as a humanitarian in the early 40s, when the efficacy of  Mechlorethamine against lymphoma was recognized. Horrific area-denial blister agent by day, secret cancer-curing clinical trials by night. 

    Still a trifle unnerving to have something be a prescription drug and a Schedule 1 substance for the purposes of the Chemical Weapons Convention; but I suppose that the boundaries between an undesired proliferation of human cells and an undesired proliferation of humans are pretty subtle when you are just a small organic molecule…

    • DrDave says:

      Reminds me of warfarin: started life as rat poison, it’s now the most widely prescribed anticoagulant in the US.

      (BTW — the “warfar” part isn’t from warfare, but rather the Wisconsin Alumni Research Foundation.)

  4. luroguco says:

    How would one go about getting prints of things like this? 

  5. Myke Marss says:

    Mustard gas looks like my uncle.

  6. Alistair Muldal says:

    Feels like I’m wearing nothing at all
    …nothing at all….
    …nothing at all….

  7. euansmith says:

    “Medical Training Replacement Center”? Is this a centre producing a replacement for medical training, or is this the replacement for the medical training centre?

  8. joshuabardwell says:

    Phosgene can be created accidentally if a chlorinated solvent, most commonly brake cleaner, is used to clean metal before welding. Since even a tiny amount can be fatal, the weldor may never get the chance to regret his or her mistake.

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