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The photochemical oxidation of formaldehyde in the gaseous phase Sharp, James Harry


The object of this work was the investigation of the photochemical oxidation of formaldehyde in the gaseous phase at 110°C. Reaction mixtures, where the O2: CH₂O ratio was approximately 1:10, were irradiated with ultra violet light at a wavelength of 3130A⁰ and the reaction products analyzed. The major products were found to be CO, H₂ and HCOOH. CO₂ was a minor product. No peroxides were found and the reaction was oxygen independent at low O₂:CH₂O ratios. The formation of the major products was found to be directly proportional to the initial formaldehyde pressure and to the intensity of the absorbed light. A satisfactory mechanism is proposed to explain the formation of the reaction products, and the following kinetic equations were derived: [formula omitted]

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