Extraction of Benzoic Acid Essay

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The purpose of this experiment is to practice common organic laboratory techniques inside the lab to get one oriented to the basic methods of procedure that can be used for later experiments. This experiment involves the separation of benzoic acid from a more crude form, consisting of benzoic acid, methyl orange, a common acid/base indicator, and cellulose, a natural polymer of glucose (Huston, and Liu 17-24). The technique that is used to perform this separation is called extraction. Extraction is a systematic process of separating mixtures of compounds, taking advantage of the affinity differences of compounds to separate them (Padias 128-37). This technique recognizes the principle that “like dissolves in like,” that is,
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These layers can be separated through the use of a seperatory funnel which drains the bottom layer into a separate container. This method uses the understanding of partition ratios of solutes to different paired solvents to produce an equilibrium leaning towards one solvent over another, thereby extracting a compound from one liquid to the other (Padias 128-37). For example, consider a mixture containing two solutes, solute A and solute B, and two immiscible solvents, solvent A and solvent B. If solute A dissolves well into solvent A, but not very well into solvent B, and solute B dissolves well into solvent B but not very well into solvent A, there would be a higher ratio of solute A in solvent A than in solvent B, and a higher ratio of solute B into solvent B than in solvent A. One can then see that, through the use of different solvents, two dissolved solutes can be separated from a mixture. This ratio of a solute concentration to different solvents is defined by K, the distribution constant. Successive filtrations yield’s a higher percentage of products.
Chemically active extraction is a highly useful method of separating organic compounds in mixtures (Padias 128-37). Organic acids and bases are soluble in organic solvents, but their corresponding salts are soluble in water. Therefore, if one had a mixture of an acidic organic compound and a basic organic compound in an organic solvent, addition of a base
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