I was wondering if the above mentioned reaction has any uses? I looked up applications and significance and couldnt find anything. I came across Saponification but that involves a base and is a completely different reaction. Then I thought the products maybe useful but i realised that ethanol and acetic acid are used to produce said ester. then what exactly is the point of this reaction?

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    $\begingroup$ The acid hydrolysis of ethyl acetate may not be very useful but the acid hydrolysis of esters as an alternative to saponification is important. Imagine the acetate ester of 4-iodobutan-1-ol (ICH2CH2CH2CH2OAc). Base treatment of this ester can effect saponification and substitution of iodide by hydroxide. On the other hand, acid hydrolysis of the ester group would leave the primary iodide intact. $\endgroup$ – user55119 Oct 7 '18 at 16:16

The products of the reaction are perfectly miscible with water and are harmless to environment in low concentrations. My guess that the leftovers of ethyl acetate can be turned to ethanol and acetic acid before disposal.

For example here you can see that ethyl acetate is forbidden from sewer disposal while ethanol and acetic acid are allowed.


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  • $\begingroup$ Not sure why acetone, methanol, or ethylacetate would be disallow specifically. considering all 3 are common in consumer products. $\endgroup$ – A.K. Oct 8 '18 at 3:57

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