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16 October, 08:50

In this experiment, 1-2 mL of saturated sodium chloride is used to transfer the crude product after the initial distillation. Why is saturated sodium chloride, rather than pure water, used for this procedure?

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  1. 16 October, 10:44
    Saturated sodium chloride is used to transfer the product rather than water since it is not polar and rinsing the product with water would revert any 4-methylcyclohexene back to 4-methylcyclohexanol in the Hickman Head and thus lowering the percent yield; using water would shift the equilibrium towards the reactants. Also sodium chloride removes the small amount of phosphoric acid and also a small amount of water. If one were to add water, both 4-methylcyclohexene and phosphoric acid are partially soluble making difficult to remove the water later; sodium chloride makes the water less reactive so easier to remove by making the aqueous later more polar.
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