catwoman4965 (Stranger)
11-08-02 14:47
No 377793
      Identification of an unknown organic compound  Bookmark   

OK, this isnt really anything to do with mind altering substance chemistry, but is more of a query.
I have been given a chemical which is either an
Carboxylic acid

Many people have suggested infra red, but unfortunatly we do not have the facilities in our school, i just need some ideas for basic chemical tests.
I would be most thankful if you help,
Sara C laugh
(Hive Addict)
11-08-02 14:58
No 377798
      Well, if you do a bisulfite test on it, you can ...  Bookmark   

Well, if you do a bisulfite test on it, you can either rule out the aldehyde and ketone options, or narrow it down to them.

Who is that masked man?
(Chief Bee)
11-08-02 15:02
No 377799
      And after that you can separate the rest by ...  Bookmark   

And after that you can separate the rest by dissolving the compound in DCM, and perform a base extraction. NaHCO3(aq) extracts carboxylic acids from an organic phase, but not phenols. NaOH(aq) extracts the phenol after any acid is removed. If nothing is found in those extracts, then you either have an alcohol or an ester.
(Synaptic Self-Mutilator)
11-08-02 17:22
No 377848
      Hmmm!  Bookmark   

I've had this very same question before at my school. Rhodium suggests the right path. The approach used went like so:

organic_solvent += unknown;
if (extract(aqueous_NaHCO3)) then printf("it's the carboxylic acid");
else if (extract(aqueous_NaOH)) then printf("it's the phenol");
else printf("it's the aldehyde/ketone");
(Hive Bee)
11-08-02 17:52
No 377852
      come on man.. do your own homework..  Bookmark   

it's for your own good wink

Never underestimate the power of retrosynthesis.