Please help - coursework Watch

Emma19
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#1
Report Thread starter 13 years ago
#1
I know alcohols are weakly acidic, but are they strong enough to react with Sodium hydrogencarbonate?

For my coursework I have to plan an experiment to identify a unknown compound, using a flow chart, which I had done, and have now realised it doesn't actually work. Hopefully I will be able to use the sodium hydrogencarbonate test to identify a carboxylic acid (if it doesn't react with an alcohol.)

Please help me, this was due in on Tuesday and that is when I realised it didn't work, but my teacher has given us some more time.

Thank you
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oceane
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Report 13 years ago
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No they don't react with NaHCO3 - yes testing for release of CO2 a good method of showing an acid. Acidic behaviour of alcohols is shown through their reactions with a metal such as sodium to form an alkoxide (metal + acid = salt + water)
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stratomaster
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Just add sodium metal so a teritary alcohol will fizz fast, and any primary alcohol or carboxylic acid will fizz slowly.. to differentiate add potassium dichromate and the acid will remain orange but the alcohol will go orange to green, OR add sodium hydrogen carbonate and colourless co2 will be evolved if an acid is present.
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