Using dry ice has become a fashionable trend. It is thanks to him, that white smoke appears that envelops the dancers or the heroes of the day at the holidays. And this dry ice makes the champagne in glasses go up in smoke. And dry ice does not melt ice cream, which is worn by sellers in portable refrigerators.
So what is this miracle?
Dry ice is carbon dioxide in a solid state (carbon dioxide CO2). Its temperature is -78 °. And they call it dry because it ... does not melt! Rather, it melts, but does not turn into water, as ordinary ice behaves, but passes this stage and evaporates, turning into gas that mixes with air.
Therefore, a piece of dry ice melts in the air, but at the same time no one feels any smell or color change in the air. By the way, that he can deliver inconvenience. Indeed, in high concentrations of its evaporation - carbon dioxide - causes headache, dizziness, oxygen starvation.
But this does not prevent many people from buying dry ice for their needs and storing it at home.
Of course, this is not forbidden. But if, nevertheless, such a desire has arisen, then it is necessary to approach this with all the responsibility and think over everything to the smallest detail. That is, where to store dry ice, how to store and, most importantly, for what and for how long.
After all, no matter how thoroughly the storage of dry ice is thought out, its evaporation — sublimation — takes place without interruption, and after a few days there will be no trace of dry ice. Therefore, dry ice should be purchased as close as possible to its intended use.
Dry ice can be bought in supermarkets, in specialized stores that sell chemicals, ordered through the Internet. And even do it yourself!
By the way, homemade dry ice has become the most popular due to the ease of its extraction from carbon dioxide fire extinguisher (OS) and extreme sports. After all, if something goes wrong in the process of harvesting dry ice, you can get injured or frostbite.
Although the ice mining operations are quite simple: you need to put a thick linen bag on the fire extinguisher's socket, it is good to fix it and press the lever. A stream of carbon dioxide, mixed with air, turns into flakes of “snow” - dry ice.
But it must be immediately shifted somewhere. To save for future reference.
How to store dry ice
It is best to store dry ice in containers that are designed specifically for storing dry ice. They can be bought in specialized stores or ordered online.
Such containers are made of a special material (impact-resistant plastic, stainless steel), the walls of which are lined with polyurethane foam or polystyrene foam (polystyrene). Due to this, the containers do not allow heat to flow from outside, and dry ice in such a container can be stored for a long time. But what if there is no opportunity to purchase special containers for storing dry ice?
For this you can use a portable refrigerator. Dry ice is also well preserved in it.
But if it is not possible to purchase it, then only one means remains - to make such a container yourself from the available material.
Any solid box is suitable for this. It is even better if it is made of corrugated cardboard. The inside of the box should be covered with foam. After all, this material is in almost every home, in which at least occasionally purchases of household appliances are made (it is wrapped in foam in boxes, protected from shocks). Instead of foam, you can take penoplex.
Foam sheets need to fit together as tightly as possible to create a solid insulation background. To seal the box joints with tape. Ice in the box also need to cover a piece of foam and close the lid.
Such an improvised container should be placed in an apartment in the coolest place. And even better - to make the balcony, if the street is not hot. In a private house, a shed can serve as a storage for a container with dry ice.
But the basement or cellar for this purpose will not work. Even if it's cold there. After all, we must not forget that dry ice, sublimating, turns into carbon dioxide. And if it is accumulated in a room that is not ventilated, quite a lot, then this may adversely affect the health of the household. Some advise to keep dry ice in the freezer. But domestic refrigerators can not withstand such a low temperature, and the thermostat in the refrigerator can fail. And also a tight-closing door in the freezer will not allow carbon dioxide to go outside, which can lead to large accumulations.
For the same reason, dry ice cannot be stored in an airtight container, because evaporating and turning into gas, dry ice takes up more space, which can lead to an explosion.
And although dry ice itself is non-toxic and practically harmless (when used correctly), it should be kept out of the reach of children and animals. After all, once in the esophagus, such ice can lead to a deplorable result. And it is not recommended to take dry ice with bare hands because of possible frostbite.
But as they say, the hunt is more than bondage. And if the desire to possess dry ice overpowers the fear of being frostbite or get a headache, then you should carefully prepare for this purchase in advance.