Burning of aluminium in bromine

Aluminum foil burns in brown gas.

Scientific name: Aluminum reacts with bromine forming aluminum bromide.


Beautiful reaction between bromine and aluminium

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Aluminium and bromine Experiment No.2/ Aluminium und Brom Versuch Nr. 2

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Chemistry experiment 32 - Reaction between bromine and aluminium

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Formation of Aluminum Bromide

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Highly Exothermic Aluminum and Bromine Reaction

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This experiment must be performed only outside or in a fume hood. Wear eye protection goggles and gloves.

Always follow general safety recommendations. Please note that conducting chemistry experiments you must comply with the relevant legal procedures in your country.

Reaction formula

2Al + 3Br2 → 2AlBr3

Step-by-step instruction

WARNING! This experiment is dangerous! You should NOT perform this at home. ONLY carry out this experiment, if you are a trained chemist, and you understand local safety and legal requirements, which are required to perform such experiments

  1. Since bromine is a highly volatile hazardous liquid, this experiment must be performed only in a fume hood.
  2. Prepare the test tube. Put the stand into the fume hood.
  3. Put the test tube on the stand.
  4. Fill the test tube with bromine.
  5. Place the foil into the test tube.
  6. Wait a little.
  7. Aluminum reacts with bromine producing a flame.

Scientific background

In this experiment aluminum is oxidized by bromine. This reaction is highly exothermic and is accompanied by flame and formation of aluminum bromide:

2Al + 3Br2 → 2AlBr3

There is a small lag time before the reaction starts. The reason of is the presence of an oxide protection layer on the surface of the foil. It takes some time to break it down.


Published on 25 February 2015

  • Fire
  • Heating with fire
  • Explosion
  • Poisoned gas
  • Organic
  • Electricity
  • Solution
  • Oxidation reduction
  • Color change
  • Precipitate
  • Gassing
  • Catalyst