# Possibility of removing two water molecules from glycerol

Not a chemist, but from a chemical formula perspective, how hard would it be to create acetone by acidifying glycerol?

$$\ce{C3H8O3 + 2 H+ <=> C3H6O + 2 H2O}$$

Has anyone ever heard of this being attempted? If it isn't possible, why?

• You do know that charge is conserved? Dehydration of glycerol yields acrolein. Apr 1 at 16:44
• Patent for forming acrolein by dehydration of glycerol patents.google.com/patent/US8378136B2/en Apr 1 at 17:15
• Your equation is not valid, because it is not balanced. There are 2 positive charges on the left hand side, and none on the right hand side. Apr 1 at 20:43
• The chemical formula doesn't tell you much that is useful for judging a reaction's feasibility. You need to look at the structure and plausible reaction mechanisms. In this case, a reaction giving acetone is not remotely likely. Apr 2 at 13:22
• Thank you. So to balance the equation neutral H2 would need to be substituted for the 2H+. And you point out also that the dehydration of glycerol results in acrolein or propenal in the above patent. A secondary reaction would then be needed to add H2 and produce propanal. How unlikely is the conservation of the C2 oxygen if you remove 2 out of the three from glycerol? I understand that it couldn't exist without H2 addition if you remove two H2O. Apr 2 at 17:33