Discussion and Conclusion: Preparation of 1-Bromobutane

1035 WordsMar 23, 20145 Pages
Discussion and Conclusion: Preparation of 1-Bromobutane The purpose of this experiment was to demonstrate the conversion of a primary alcohol, 1-butanol, to a primary bromoalkane, 1-bromobutane, a SN2 reaction. The conversion of 1-butanol to 1-bromobutane relies on sulfuric acid which plays two important roles. First, it protonates the alcohol of 1-butanol to form an oxonium ion which is a good leaving group. Secondly, it produces the hydrobromic acid, the nucleophile, which attacks 1-butanol causing the oxonium ion to leave and forming 1-bromobutane. However, using sulfuric acid in this experiment has several downsides. First, it poses a huge safety hazard as it can cause severe burns. Secondly, it reacts exothermically, which was…show more content…
This is done on the basis that when these particular reactants react with a halide, the silver halide or sodium halide are insoluble in the mixture while silver nitrate and sodium iodide are insoluble. A precipitate forming indicates that a halide is indeed present in the unknown. The difference between these two tests is that the silver nitrate test undergoes the SN1 mechanism while the sodium iodide test undergoes the SN2 mechanism. Using these differences, the type of carbon the halogen is attached to can be determined because of the nature of each mechanism. The SN1 mechanism reacts fastest with tertiary carbons and slowest with primary carbons while the SN2 mechanism reacts fastest with primary carbons and slowest with tertiary carbons. Essentially, they react at rates opposite of each other. As a result, a molecule with a halogen attached to a primary carbon should react fastest with sodium iodide, a molecule with a halogen attached to a tertiary carbon should react fastest with silver nitrate, and a molecule with a halogen attached to a secondary carbon should react at equal rates between silver nitrate and sodium iodide. Knowing the structure of 1-bromobutane, the sodium iodide test should occur the quickest since bromine is attached to a primary carbon. In this experiment, the two tests were conducted on primary, secondary,

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