I have been messing around with making Indigo dye while waiting for bacteria to grow. I have been following the Baeyer-Drewson method. Basically, you mix nitrobenzaldehyde with an acetone water mix and slowly add NaOH. The solution turns black and you get a dark sludge. I have been separating the sludge from the liquid by centrifugation. I have noticed that the supernatent has a dark reddish brown color.
- I was wondering if anyone knew what the red byproduct was?
- My indigo is black when dried, wikipedia shows nice bright blue chunks. What could be causing this color difference? Maybe the red byproduct?
- Does indigo dissolve in anything without needing to be reduced first? I have had no luck with the organic solvents available in our lab.