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
- Make a mixture of nitric and sulfuric acids. Put 50 ml of concentrated sulfuric acid and 25 ml of concentrated nitric acid into a graduated cylinder.
- Transfer the mixture into a beaker and stir.
- Weigh approximately 5 grams of cotton wool.
- Put the cotton wool into a beaker and stir the resulting mixture. Wait until the brown gas stops releasing (approximately 2 minutes).
- Prepare 3 beakers with distilled water.
- Transfer the cotton wool from the beaker with acids into the first beaker with water, then to the second beaker, then to the third beaker.
- Wait 15 minutes.
- Add a small amount of soda to the third beaker until the gas stops releasing.
- Rinse the cotton wool with water and dry it.
- Ignite the resulting piece of nitrocellulose. It will burn very quickly.