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Year 12 Chemistry: Production Of Materials. Ethanol Research Task

1697 words - 7 pages

Year 12 Chemistry Research Task9.2 - Production of MaterialsDescribe the dehydration of ethanol to ethylene and identify the need for a catalyst in this process and the catalyst used.A dehydration reaction is a reaction in which a molecule of water is removed from a compound. The molecule of water is released as one product.A hydrogen atom and OH group are removed from adjacent carbon atoms to form the water molecule. Each carbon atom has an unpaired electron and both of them join up to form a carbon-carbon double bond.The dehydration of ethanol involves ethanol being heated to about 180oC with concentrated sulfuric acid or phosphoric acid used a catalyst and dehydrating agent. A catalyst is needed in order to speed up the reaction and lower the activation energy required for the reaction to take place.H+CH3CH2OH(l) → CH2CH2(g) + H2O(l)Describe the addition of water to ethylene resulting in the production of ethanol and identify the need for a catalyst in this process and the catalyst used.A hydration reaction is a reaction in which a water molecule is added to a compound.In the hydration of ethylene, one of the two carbon-carbon bonds is broken. A hydrogen atom of the water molecule is added to a carbon atom. The OH group of the water molecule is added to another carbon atom.The hydration of ethylene is an example of an addition reaction with alkenes.The hydration of ethanol involves ethanol being heated at 300oC with dilute aqueous sulfuric acid or phosphoric acid used a catalyst and hydrating agent. A catalyst is needed in order to speed up the reaction and lower the activation energy required for the reaction to take place. An acid catalyst is required because the water molecule itself will not attack the electrons in the ethylene double bond. Only species such as H+ that are electron-poor will attack the electron-rich double bond in ethylene.H+CH2=CH2(g) + H2O(g) → CH3CH2OH(g)Describe and account for the many uses of ethanol as a solvent for polar and non-polar substances.Ethanol is a solvent for both polar and non-polar substances. It is commonly used as a solvent in medicines (cough mixtures), industrial processes (production of perfumes and plastics), food colourings and some cleaning agents. Ethanol has a variety of uses because it is the least toxic of all the alcohols. It is poisonous in moderate amounts rather than in small amounts. Ethanol is very useful in dissolving substances that are not soluble in water and hence allowing these substances to become soluble in water/ethanol mixtures. This allows medicines that are not water soluble to be taken as a liquid.Ethanol is polar. The covalent bonds within the ethanol molecule are polar and do not balance each other out. The oxygen atom is more electronegative than the carbon or hydrogen atom, therefore, a dipole is formed. Hence, ethanol is polar.In ethanol, the hydrophilic hydroxyl -OH group can dissolve polar molecules by forming dipole-dipole forces or hydrogen bonding with...

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