Verification of copper and cadmium with dithizone

Chemicals needed

distilled water

cadmium nitrate GSBRANDF.gif (891 Byte) O GSGiftig.gif (734 Byte) T    R 8-23/25-33-40    S (1/2)-22-45

diethyl ether  GSLEICHT.gif (932 Byte) F+      R 12-19-22-66-67     S (2)-9-16-29-33

ethanol dithizone solution  GSLEICHT.gif (932 Byte) F   R 11    S (2)-7-16

copper(II)-chloride (anhydrous or dihydrate) GSGiftig.gif (734 Byte) T     R 25-36/37/38    S 37-45

One can also use copper(II) nitrate and/or cadmium chloride.

Equipment needed

3 test tubes

test procedure



The uncomplexed colored dithizone forms with CU(II) and CD(II) hydrophobic characteristically colored complexes.

cddt.gif (3317 Byte)

cadmium dithizonate


DSCN0549.JPG (233465 Byte)

from left to right: blank test, copper(II), cadmium(II)


derived from 5.2. Experiment 1, "Arbeitsgang für den Nachweis von Kupfer- und Cadmiumionen nebeneinander", p. 67, [6]