Chemistry Experiment : Oxidation Of Borneol

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Experiment 3: Oxidation of Borneol to Camphor
By: Evan Holley
Lab partner: Jeffrey Horton
T.A.: Garret

Introduction The overall goal in this lab was to oxidize borneol, a secondary alcohol, into camphor, which is a ketone. For the purposes of oxidation chromic acid was utilized, which was prepared by adding a 1:1 ratio of chromium trioxide to dilute sulfuric acid. The oxidation reaction occurs as a two-step reaction. The first step involves the formation of chromate esters and the second step is an elimination reaction that will produce the carbonyl group necessary to make either a ketone or an aldehydes. The reaction is hallmarked by the breaking of a C-H bond and the formation of a C-O bond (James, 2014). Specifically when oxidizing alcohols, it is important to note that primary alcohols can be converted to aldehydes as well as completely to carboxylic acids, secondary alcohols are converted to ketones and no further, and tertiary alcohols cannot be oxidized. The oxidizing agent removes the hydrogen from the –OH group and the hydrogen from the C-H group attached to the –OH group in a compound. Tertiary alcohols cannot be oxidized because they lack the C-H bond that is present in both the oxidation of primary and secondary alcohols (Clark, 2003).
The conditions for this type of reaction vary depending on what degree of alcohol you are trying to oxidize. In our case, we oxidized a secondary alcohol at room temperature. It was

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