Copper removal help

https://www.triton.de/en/

sevitz5

Active Member
View Badges
Joined
Mar 29, 2017
Messages
442
Reaction score
94
I purchase a branching rock at my lfs tonight that I found out had been in copper. I want to figure out how I can make this rock reef safe before I add it to my tank. Throwing it out, or returning it is not an option since I haven’t been able to find branch rock around me for well over a year. What is a good way to remove the copper? Thanks.
 
Aquarium Specialty - dry goods & marine livestock

Philly Reefer

Valuable Member
View Badges
Joined
Jun 5, 2020
Messages
1,295
Reaction score
2,751
Location
Philly
I purchase a branching rock at my lfs tonight that I found out had been in copper. I want to figure out how I can make this rock reef safe before I add it to my tank. Throwing it out, or returning it is not an option since I haven’t been able to find branch rock around me for well over a year. What is a good way to remove the copper? Thanks.
Sorry to say.. its not worth having that rock in your tank if you are going to add corals or invertebrates
 

Courtney Aldrich

Active Member
View Badges
Joined
Dec 31, 2020
Messages
183
Reaction score
175
Location
Minneapolis
I purchase a branching rock at my lfs tonight that I found out had been in copper. I want to figure out how I can make this rock reef safe before I add it to my tank. Throwing it out, or returning it is not an option since I haven’t been able to find branch rock around me for well over a year. What is a good way to remove the copper? Thanks.
I would soak the rock for several weeks in a solution of EDTA, which will tightly bind the copper ions impregnated in the rock (purchase here: https://www.loudwolf.com/storefront/index.php?route=product/product&path=687&product_id=1724). Submerse in RO/DI water and add 0.5-1 oz of EDTA. After soaking in EDTA, discard the water and soak in RO/DI water for another week.
 
OP
sevitz5

sevitz5

Active Member
View Badges
Joined
Mar 29, 2017
Messages
442
Reaction score
94
I would soak the rock for several weeks in a solution of EDTA, which will tightly bind the copper ions impregnated in the rock (purchase here: https://www.loudwolf.com/storefront/index.php?route=product/product&path=687&product_id=1724). Submerse in RO/DI water and add 0.5-1 oz of EDTA. After soaking in EDTA, discard the water and soak in RO/DI water for another week.
Is this the same? It’s the EDTA we use at work. It’s just the powder form we mix with DI water.
98BFE39F-4DA7-46ED-8B37-440D0733EDAD.jpeg
 

Randy Holmes-Farley

Reef Chemist
View Badges
Joined
Sep 5, 2014
Messages
43,053
Reaction score
31,646
Location
Arlington, Massachusetts, United States
Yes, that will probably work, but you need to rinse very well before using the rock. Getting substantial EDTA into the tank is not desirable, IMO, as it may make a number of trace elements less bioavailable.

My typical suggestion is to expose the rock to acid (such as straight vinegar) and dissolve off a very thin outer layer. Then you can treat further, if you wish, by soaking in a solution with a metal binder in it (like cuprisorb).
 
AS

Philly Reefer

Valuable Member
View Badges
Joined
Jun 5, 2020
Messages
1,295
Reaction score
2,751
Location
Philly
I would rather return that rock than not having a piece of mind in future.

Everytime a coral or invert dies, my 1st question would be... Is it the copper leaching out again?

If there is still residual copper, you exposed all your rocks in DT now, what do you do then?

Get all new rocks?
 
OP
sevitz5

sevitz5

Active Member
View Badges
Joined
Mar 29, 2017
Messages
442
Reaction score
94
I appreciate all the help. My main problem is, in Ohio where I’m at, I can’t get a rock like this anywhere. I have been looking for the last 2 years. I am going to cut the small branches off and use them to mount some SPS Frags up off my existing rock work.
 

Philly Reefer

Valuable Member
View Badges
Joined
Jun 5, 2020
Messages
1,295
Reaction score
2,751
Location
Philly
I appreciate all the help. My main problem is, in Ohio where I’m at, I can’t get a rock like this anywhere. I have been looking for the last 2 years. I am going to cut the small branches off and use them to mount some SPS Frags up off my existing rock work.
Just to clarify, you are looking around your LFS, right? Cause I am pretty sure some online vendors have them.
I understand it's not cheap to ship
 
Aquarium Specialty - dry goods & marine livestock

Doctorgori

Valuable Member
View Badges
Joined
Mar 18, 2019
Messages
1,899
Reaction score
1,939
Location
NE Ohio
All I can find is over $100 for a piece from online vendors. I only need 5 or 6 of the small branches off 1 big branch like I have.
Aquatic Technology in Lorain County has some still with feather dusters and such, I have some, it’s pretty diverse. I can’t speak on his price as I jacked him outta friendship LOL. I’ll take a pic in 8 min
 
Corals.com

Courtney Aldrich

Active Member
View Badges
Joined
Dec 31, 2020
Messages
183
Reaction score
175
Location
Minneapolis
I appreciate all the help. My main problem is, in Ohio where I’m at, I can’t get a rock like this anywhere. I have been looking for the last 2 years. I am going to cut the small branches off and use them to mount some SPS Frags up off my existing rock work.
I think you can safely remove the copper using EDTA. As Randy pointed out it also important to remove the EDTA, which is why I suggested soaking in water for another week following the initial EDTA treatment. To help remove any EDTA you could also soak in some mild acid overnight as this would help remove any EDTA bound to the rock. I think this would be safe and effective. There are also biodegradable chelating agents you can use such as nitrilotriacetic acid (NTA), ethylenediaminedisuccinic acid (EDDS), and iminodisuccinic acid (IDS). I have attached a review on these if you're interested. I would soak the rock in these compounds for 3 days (maybe repeat once for another 3 days with fresh compound), then in water for a week or two. Any residual chelating agents left in the rock will degrade in a few weeks, so you won't have any contamination.
 

Attachments

  • EnvironSciPollutRes2014_Biodegradable Chelating Agents.pdf
    741.4 KB · Views: 3
OP
sevitz5

sevitz5

Active Member
View Badges
Joined
Mar 29, 2017
Messages
442
Reaction score
94
I think you can safely remove the copper using EDTA. As Randy pointed out it also important to remove the EDTA, which is why I suggested soaking in water for another week following the initial EDTA treatment. To help remove any EDTA you could also soak in some mild acid overnight as this would help remove any EDTA bound to the rock. I think this would be safe and effective. There are also biodegradable chelating agents you can use such as nitrilotriacetic acid (NTA), ethylenediaminedisuccinic acid (EDDS), and iminodisuccinic acid (IDS). I have attached a review on these if you're interested. I would soak the rock in these compounds for 3 days (maybe repeat once for another 3 days with fresh compound), then in water for a week or two. Any residual chelating agents left in the rock will degrade in a few weeks, so you won't have any contamination.
I currently have the rock soaking in 3 gallon of RODI water. How much EDTA do I use? Is there a ratio? Thanks
 

Randy Holmes-Farley

Reef Chemist
View Badges
Joined
Sep 5, 2014
Messages
43,053
Reaction score
31,646
Location
Arlington, Massachusetts, United States
I currently have the rock soaking in 3 gallon of RODI water. How much EDTA do I use? Is there a ratio? Thanks

It won't require much to eventually pull it out, but twice as much might go about twice as fast (not really certain as I'm not sure what the slow step is, or even what the molecular level process is: copper comes off the solid surface and into the waiting arms of EDTA, or EDTA helping to actually pull it off).

I see no reason to not use a substantial amount since it may not be a fast process to begin with.
 
Aquarium Specialty - dry goods & marine livestock
https://www.triton.de/en/

BIG TANKS VERSUS SMALLER TANKS...WHICH DO YOU PREFER?

  • BIGGER

    Votes: 624 75.8%
  • smaller

    Votes: 156 19.0%
  • Other (please explain)

    Votes: 43 5.2%

Online statistics

Members online
832
Guests online
3,404
Total visitors
4,236
Orphek OR3 Reef Aquarium LED Lighting
Top