Sulphuric acid, is one of the most corrosive substances. Internet users sprinkled sponges with a few millilitres of this acid, to spectacular effect.
SpongeBob had better watch out now! He could meet a messy end if he found his way in the hands of members of the community 'Let's melt this' who have their headquarters on Youtube, and whose channel has thousands of subscribers. Fans who love to watch videos that melt just about anything and everything. And this one is no exception. You be the judge of it.
Sulphuric acid is extremely effective
Called at the time of its discovery oil of vitriol or fuming vitriol, sulphuric acid, whose chemical formula is H₂SO₄, is considered to be the strongest of the simple acids. Every year, 180 million tonnes of it are produced in the world, as its potency grants it a myriad of uses for human activities. It is found in the composition of many products and many types of industry: manufacture of fertilizers, artificial textiles, petroleum refining, chemical strippers, batteries… just to name a few.
Extremely corrosive, it is able to burn any type of organic material, including the skin. This is why handling it requires taking special precautions and in particular physically protecting yourself properly.
A spectacular experiment
Necessarily well protected, our 'Let's melt this' testers therefore attempted an experiment by pouring sulphuric acid on innocent sponges (therefore organic matter). The least we can say is that the effect is as spectacular as it is swift.
In just a few seconds, all the sponges disappear to turn into a brown sludge. While the liquid is already very dangerous and must be handled with the greatest care, the vapours which escape from the reactions are equally harmful. Something which should be enough to convince anyone watching never to play with sulphuric acid! To better see the chemical reaction, you can watch another experiment in slow motion.