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Alternatives to Hydrofluoric Acid



Yes this is nasty stuff indeed.  Many die each year from laboratory and
industrial accidents involving its use.  Unfortunately it is one of the few
things that dissolvea silica - the very substance that mineral is made of.
Frosted light bulbs are often treated with HF to etch the  glass.  If the
company dissolves the mineral to get the impurity out, how do they
reconstitute the mineral?  Are there other silaceous materials they could
use that do not have those impurities?  If they finely pulverize the
mineral, can they separate the impurities by density differences?  A good
cause and effect diagram (the world's most popular problem-solving tool)
would be very useful in this context as one asks the question, "Why am I
using HF?"  Even Santa uses this tool as she decides how to deliver so many
presents to so many places to all good P2 providers.  There are just
sometimes a checklist will not do!  :-)


Bob

Dr. Robert B. Pojasek 
Pojasek & Associates 
P.O. Box 1333 
E. Arlington, MA 02474-0071
(781) 641-2422 
(617) 788-0288 (FAX)

http://www.PollutionPrevention.com
rpojasek@PollutionPrevention.com