CM1501 Expt 2 Essay

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National University of Singapore

Organic Chemistry for Engineers

Lab Report
Experiment 2: Separation and Identification of Two Organic Compounds

10th October 2013

This experiment involves the separation and identification of 2 organic compounds (1 Neutral Compound and 1 Acidic Compound) in a mixture. Separation techniques used in this experiment include solvent extraction, simple distillation and recrystallization using a suitable solvent determined through a solubility test. The identification method used was through Melting Point Determination. By obtaining data of the melting points of the 2 purified compounds and cross-referencing from a list of possible organic compounds, the 2 organic compounds were
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Contamination of the purified products will cause the melting point determination to deviate from actual results and identifying the compounds incorrectly.
The solubility test conducted to determine the recrystallization solvent might be another possible source of error. The amount of compound to be added into 2mL of the solvent was estimated rather than accurately weighed. This may have caused errors in determining the solubility of the compounds in the solvents and hence, led to incorrect use of the proper recrystallization technique for the compounds. Furthermore, cloudy mixtures obtained upon mixing the compound and the solvent might cause the solubility of the compounds to be inaccurately determined.
A mixture of 2 organic compounds was separated using recrystallization and purified. Melting Point Determination was the method used to identify the 2 organic compounds and cross-checking the experimental results obtained with a list of possible organic compounds showed that the Neutral Compound was Dibenzalacetone and the Acidic Compound was o-Chlorobenzoic acid. Verifying the identified compounds via their appearances with references further validated the experimental results.
1. Royal Society of Chemistry, Chemspider, Search and Share Chemistry, Retrieved 14 September 2013
2. Royal Society of Chemistry, Chemspider, Search and Share Chemistry
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