   Chapter 4, Problem 90GQ

Chapter
Section
Textbook Problem

A Menthol, from oil of mint, has a characteristic odor. The compound contains only C, H, and O. If 95.6 mg of menthol burns completely in O2, and gives 269 mg of CO2 and 111 mg of H2O, what is the empirical formula of menthol?

Interpretation Introduction

Interpretation:

The empirical formula of menthol has to be determined.

Concept introduction:

• Empirical formula of a compound represents the smallest whole number relative ratio of elements in that compound.
• Equation for finding Molecular formula from the empirical formula,

MolarmassEmpiricalformula mass × Empirical formula

• The molar mass of an element or compound is the mass in grams of 1 mole of that substance, and it is expressed in the unit of grams per mol (g/mol).
Explanation

Given that 95.6mg of menthol burns in oxygen then give 269mg of CO2 and 111mg of H2O

From the given masses the amount of CO2andH2O can be calculated.

Thus, amount of CO2andH2O are,

0.269gCO2×1molCO244.010gCO2=0.00612molCO20.111gH2O×1molH2O18.015gH2O=0.00616molH2O

For every mole of CO2 isolated, 1 mol of C must have been present in the menthol compound.

So,

0.00612molCO2×1molCinmenthol1molCO2=0.00612molC

For every mole of H2O isolated, 2 mol of H must have been present in the unknown compound.

Therefore,

0.00616molH2O×2molHinmenthol1molH2O=0.0123molH

The mass of carbon and Hydrogen are 0

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