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Deuterium Lecture bottle

Posted: Tue Oct 25, 2011 9:58 pm
by TannerOates

Re: Deuterium Lecture bottle

Posted: Tue Oct 25, 2011 11:08 pm
by Jim Kovalchick
Yep, that's the right stuff, but Sigma Aldrich won't have anything to do with you unless you are a business or university. Good Luck

Re: Deuterium Lecture bottle

Posted: Tue Oct 25, 2011 11:18 pm
by TannerOates
So what source to you suggest.

Re: Deuterium Lecture bottle

Posted: Wed Oct 26, 2011 9:19 am
by jcs78227
We use Sigma-Aldrich at work, but the obvious caveat already pointed out applies. For individuals, Airgas ( is preferred at least by me for amateur work and a few others. Matheson Tri-Gas ( has shipped to me as well. These are are heavy duty gas suppliers for industry, so you need to know what kind of purity you're looking for, amount, whether you want a lecture bottle (smaller, convenient, pay up front and most are non-refillable) or a larger tank (longer lasting, refillable, rented/leased, transport costs). LB's are what I've seen in an amateur setting (with one exception), payment terms, etc.

If you are under 18, actually 21 in some instances, it's a no-go. You have to have an adult order these gases. Sure, some get around the age thing, but they have been clamping down recently. Also, refer to this post by Richard Hull for a plausible and legitimate reason for needing it--> viewtopic.php?f=6&t=3161#p19748

I tell them what it's for and they have no clue, but it hasn't mattered.

Good seem to be making progress rather expeditiously. Excellent!


Re: Deuterium Lecture bottle

Posted: Wed Oct 26, 2011 11:17 am
by Jim Kovalchick
It's a shame that Sigma-Aldrich won't ship to individuals. They have a great variety of research chemicals. They recently refused to ship to my son's grandfather who is legitimately incorporated as a chemical supply consultant. He has been in the plating chemical business for decades and has legally used way more hazardous stuff at his address than the deuterium gas they won't ship him. They rejected him because they said they somehow determined his address was a private residence. I guess someone there with nothing better to do google-earthed his address and determined it looks like a home when viewed from outer space.

I have also been rejected by Airgas and Matheson. I suspect the ability to deal with different suppliers may vary by locality, so you may want to still try them in your area. Age is definitely not the reason that I get rejected as I am pushing 50. I was told by multiple suppliers that it doesn't have anything really to do with deuterium, but rather its a combined issue of homeland security and meth lab crap. Good luck ever buying nitric acid even though that is a very commonly used chemical and older bottles of sit in most high school chem labs. By the way, the suppliers will ship to a university but not a high school.

I'm probably the last person you want advice from on obtaining deuterium gas because we still don't have any ourselves. If you strike out getting gas an want to go the electrolysis route, you will find that most chemical supply companies won't ship you heavy water either. United Nuclear is the way to go there. I have successfully purchased some D2O from them.

I wish you speedy luck in your search.

Jim K

Re: Deuterium Lecture bottle

Posted: Sun Oct 30, 2011 7:09 pm
by Edward Miller
It's because when they do shipping FedEx and UPS know the address is residential.

They're just trying to limit their liability. With chemicals the purchaser takes on the risk and they're just more comfortable knowing that it's a business with appropriate insurance.

United Nuclear sells Nitric Acid and a variety of other stuff although at higher rates than regular chemistry suppliers. Your best bet is always to pull in someone from a local college that's interested in helping.

I highly recommend Advanced Specialty Gases out of Reno, NV they have always been reasonable and their pricing is good.

Re: Deuterium Lecture bottle

Posted: Mon Oct 31, 2011 5:39 pm
by billwcf
Hi, I talked to my local Airgas/National Welders guy. If you happen to live in Va, NC., Or SC, you can get deuterium from them. Don't know about other states; You will have talk to them. I was quoted $82.50 for 25 liters and $165 for 50 liters, tank included. There is also a $10.50 hazmat fee charge. It is 99.7% D2 (CP? grade). You have to establish a cash account with them. I just purchased a rather large bottle of 99.9999% H2 from them with no problems. Of course I can't be responsible for the accuracy of these quotes.

For Nitric acid, try these guys: ... ode=search


Re: Deuterium Lecture bottle

Posted: Tue Nov 01, 2011 8:00 am
by jcs78227
bill fain wrote:
>It is 99.7% D2 (CP? grade).

CP is a reagent grade abbreviation for Chemically Pure. Depending on the material in question, it can be anywhere from slightly more pure to significantly more pure in nature than technical grade.


Re: Deuterium Lecture bottle

Posted: Thu Nov 03, 2011 3:49 pm
by Doug Coulter
I have many books that refer to CP as "commercially pure" *not* "chemically pure" and in any case, it'd be the rare case to call 97% "reagent grade" except in special situations. Not to pick nits though. D from a cylinder definately works far better than what you can get with electrolysis, which tends to get a lot of other junk in it, from air dissolved and released from the solution, to the obvious water vapor.

We ran tests here on D purity, and find that about 1/2% of various impurities make the fusor run more stably, but with somewhat less neutron output per power input. So it matters to some. FWIW, it was most sensitive to H2O impurity (we also tried He, N2, A, and welding gas mixes, and shop air), which the CP stuff is probably pretty free of. We found no changes going from ~.5% impurity to 99.999% (5 9's) purity here. We bought (paid for!) 6 nines pure gas from Matheson, but my mass spectrometer says we only get 5 nines in real life. I must say, they are good to deal with, and the nice two stage regulator we got from them is also about as sweet as they come - works down to almost vacuum on the output line with good regulation.

I did one deal with Advanced specialty gases. Not so sweet, though they did ship to me no problems and the product was good quality. By the time I paid hazmat and for a dedicated truck (they insisted) that waist high bottle of neon with 1k psi in it cost me $2500. Anyone want to buy some repackaged neon?

It's so easy to set up as a business, I wonder why more don't do it. All you need to do is get a checking account as a "Doing business as" proprietorship (pick a cool name for it), and say you're from that business when making the call to order things. It's never failed me so far, and it helps keep my cost accounting separate. Your tax number is your SS, taxes are all rolled together with personal (which is usually an advantage if you itemize) - nothing magic here. But of course, you have to be enough of a social engineer, and act like you do this every day on the phone, or you raise suspicion, I'd guess. For example, don't brag about being the company owner - they don't make purchase calls, but use some grunt in the purchasing dept for that - so that's your persona on the phone, one of a grunt working for the outfit.

It seems some people are always running into trouble with that, and regulations and regulators - but some almost never have a problem. I suggest a change of approach/attitude for those people as being most effective in getting to where you want to go. I *know* to my core I'm legit, and doing nothing wrong, and it comes across convincingly - and naturally, since I believe it myself, so I don't have those problems.

Re: Deuterium Lecture bottle

Posted: Thu Nov 03, 2011 4:44 pm
by Jim Kovalchick
Doug, its not just about being a business. It's also about having a location they consider a place of business. My father-in-law is legitimately incorporated as a chemical supply consultant with a specialty in plating. He has done research with plating chemicals way, way nastier than D in his basement since the 60's. He has an address on Main Street in a small town, but when he tried to order a bottle of D for Mike, Sigma Aldrich originally took the order, but cancelled it a few days later saying that they had 'found out' his place of business was a residence.

Even Matheson, who I have had very friendly customer interactions with, will not by policy deliver to a residence. They also have very strict requirements about documentation, security, procedures, hazmat response, records retention, etc that you have to sign for. So, many potential fusors who want to do this at home will have to find ways around how gas suppliers do business today.

I know some folks already have good working relationships with gas suppliers where they can easily call for a bottle or walk in and get one, but trust me if a newbie amateur fusor wants to get a bottle directly from a gas or chemical supplier cold without deception, then they will have a tough go at it.