Alcohols are organic compounds that contain the hydroxyl group (-OH). Alcohols are classified according to the number of carbon atoms the carbon atom bearing the hydroxyl group is attached to. If the carbon atom bearing the hydroxyl group is attached to one carbon, the alcohol is said primary and if it is attached to two carbons it is a secondary alcohol and a tertiary alcohol if attached to three carbons. If the carbon atom bearing the hydroxyl group is in a benzene ring it is called a phenol and is a secondary alcohol. In this experiment, chromate ion will be used to react with different alcohols including an unknown one. We will then classify the alcohols and identify the unknown based on the color of the solutions after the reaction. The apparition of a green color indicates a primary or a secondary alcohol oxidized by the chromate. The persistence of an orange color indicates absence of reaction and therefore a tertiary alcohol as tertiary alcohol cannot oxidize.
Apparatus and chemicals
6 test tubes
8Drops of the alcohols and an unknown were placed in separate test tubes. 2 Drops of chromate solution were added to each test tube and looked for a color change. The orange color of chromate solution changed to green in some tubes (oxidation of the alcohol has taken place) and remains orange in other tubes (no oxidation happened). Observations were…