45 votes
Accepted

How do I extract cyanide from apple seeds?

Forget about the apple seeds, they contain about 1 to 4 mg amygdalin per gramm seeds (DOI). Instead, collect apricot seeds during the right season, the amygdalin content varies though the year and can ...
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24 votes

How can an inexperienced chemist determine the chemical structure of a molecule?

So, assuming I am able to extract an unknown chemical of some specified group from a plant, is there any way for me to determine the chemical's structure? Yes. I don't really have access to these ...
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  • 1,462
14 votes

How do I extract cyanide from apple seeds?

Honestly, you probably wouldn't be able to get this done with just a highschool chem lab, at least not to a high purity (whether or not this is needed is debatable; in fact it could be interesting in ...
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  • 804
11 votes

Is it possible to extract magnesium from epsom salt?

Supposed you are trying to obtain magnesium metal from Epsom salt, $\ce{MgSO4.7 H2O}$: Is is worth the effort? Magnesium metal in the form of chips (particle size 4-30 mesh) in decent purity (99.98%) ...
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9 votes

What possibilities are there for refining aluminium on the moon?

My theory was to use electromagnetic separation, aka the Calutrons used in the Manhattan Project. Fine powder feedstock (check), into an arc discharge to vaporize and ionize (lots of good designs for ...
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  • 7,640
8 votes
Accepted

Extracting urea from urine

First, from Boundless.com (Chemical Composition of Urine), "Urine is an aqueous solution of greater than 95% water, with the remaining constituents, in order of decreasing concentration urea 9.3 g/L, ...
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  • 1,488
8 votes
Accepted

Increasing partition coefficient in an extraction

Generally, extraction of substances with organic solvents is influenced by various factors, among which there are the following: nature of the extracted substance and the extractant (not a variable ...
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  • 35.3k
8 votes
Accepted

Why do we use coke instead of coal in order to reduce FeO as basic reaction in ironmaking process?

The single most important factor is strength ( mechanical compressive ); coal is heated to make coke, the resulting coke is stronger than the original coal. Also, coke helps to make the charge of iron ...
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  • 2,990
8 votes

Looking for caffeine partition coefficients

Dichloromethane/ethyl acetate are not organic solvents for which the partition of an organic compound between water and an organic solvent are often recorded. More frequently these partitions are ...
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  • 23.7k
7 votes
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Replacement for cyclohexane

Cyclohexane is used for this extraction because it is nonpolar, as is iodine. A more polar solvent like acetone or ethanol will also extract a whole bunch of other stuff like essential oils, proteins, ...
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7 votes
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Distribution coeffecient without concentrations

Molar concentration can be expressed via mass $m$ and volume $V$ all right: $$C_i = \frac{n_i}{V_i} = \frac{m_i}{M_iV_i}$$ Analyte doesn't change during the extraction and its molar mass $M$ remains ...
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  • 35.3k
7 votes

How to extract pure potassium carbonate from ash?

The composition of the wood ashes varies with the nature and the origin of the wood. In the average, it is a mixture of $40$ % - $70$ % $\ce{CaCO3}$, $5$% - $10$% $\ce{MgCO3}$, $5$% - $10$% $\ce{K2CO3}...
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  • 21.3k
7 votes

How to extract pure potassium carbonate from ash?

Historically speaking, potassium derives from pot ash and now potash when -- if there were no geologic sources of $\ce{K2CO3}$ -- woods were burnt in a pot. The addition of water will dissolve $\ce{...
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6 votes
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How to cheaply extract iodine from an alcoholic solution?

Alcoholic solution of iodine What firstly comes to mind is that you meant "iodine tincture". This question must have been frequently asked, since answers are available out there with ...
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  • 10.2k
6 votes

How to extract thymol from oregano leaves?

This sounds like a nice project and I'm tempted to answer in too much detail, but since this is homework […]. Here are some hints: Find information about thymol. This is crucial! What is the ...
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6 votes

General Alkaloid Extraction Process

7-Hydroxymitragynine The extraction and crystallization of the parent alkaloid, mitragynine, from dried leaves of Mitragyna speciosa (Kratom), has been described in great detail by A. H. Beckett, E. ...
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6 votes
Accepted

Why is ZnO reduced in this reaction?

This method works because one of the reaction products, $\ce{CO}$, is gaseous (at the stated reaction temperature) and is continually removed. Following Le Chatelier's Principle, the equilibrium: $$\...
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  • 1,869
6 votes

Condenser shooting out hexane in a soxhlet extraction

Heating without boiling chips or stirring will cause vapor to burst. Your condenser is not the efficient type either. Suggestion: add boiling chips (after it is cooled down); change a more efficient ...
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  • 2,070
5 votes

Is the condenser for a Soxhlet extraction left open on top

First thing, you should NEVER perform any heated reaction with a stoppered condenser. You shouldn't even be allowed to work independently in the lab if this rule is not coming automatic to you. I am ...
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  • 1,536
5 votes

What possibilities are there for refining aluminium on the moon?

The standard process for electrolysing $\ce{Al2O3}$ to $\ce{Al}$ should work fine on the moon. Note that on Earth, a consumable carbon anode is used to reduce the voltage required, giving the reaction ...
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5 votes

What possibilities are there for refining aluminium on the moon?

I don't think this is going to be a good idea. Notice that the Al and O existing in the Moon's soil are not there are free elements, but are tightly bound in minerals. On Earth, Al is extracted from ...
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  • 4,994
5 votes

What possibilities are there for refining aluminium on the moon?

Ionic liquid refining of aluminum is a promising solution which uses 3 kWh of electricity per kg instead of around 15 kWh for existing methods.
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  • 2,596
5 votes
Accepted

Liquid-liquid caffeine extraction

I suggest to use a 1:1 mixture of dichloromethane and 0.2 M NaOH at room temperature. The protocol was described by Tetsuo Onami and Hitoshi Kanazawa in J. Chem. Educ, 1996, 73, 556-557. The authors ...
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5 votes
Accepted

Can ethyl acetate isolate cinnamaldehyde from cinnamon oil?

Yes, ethyl acetate can be used to isolate cinnamaldehyde from cinnamon oil, though there are better non-haloalkane options. In a study that aimed to optimize the extraction of cinnamaldehyde from ...
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  • 23.3k
5 votes
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How to separate sulfur and carbon powders?

Two possibilities: Distillation: Sulfur has the comparatively low boiling point of 718 K ​(445 °C). Heating in apparatus not affected by sulfur (which leaves out iron) will leave behind the carbon. ...
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5 votes
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Techniques to extract lipids

Casein is a mixture of phosphoproteins found in milk that accounts for approximately 80% of the total protein content of cow milk (cow milk contains 3.3% total protein). Hence, it is easy to prepare ...
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5 votes
Accepted

Why is a weak base more able to deprotonate a strong acid than a weak acid?

The key is that water is the great equalizer and mediator. Let's deal with weak and strong base first: You are right that a sufficient quantity of a strong base would have the same effect. In this ...
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  • 6,748
5 votes
Accepted

How to remove sugar from juice

A blueberry contains ~85% water, 5% glucose, and 5% fructose (and it is generally considered a low glycemic index food, see e.g. this site). The solubility of fructose in water is extremely high (...
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  • 18.7k
5 votes

Why n-alkanes can be found in organic solvent extract of rubber?

Although natural rubber and synthetic rubber display a poor chemical resistance to alkanes among others, they do not dissolve in alkanes. Your GC/MS traces (I believe that so because of alkane/alkene ...
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5 votes
Accepted

How can I measure the amount of quinine in a home-made tonic water?

Without standard solutions and a fluorimeter, you can do a side-by-side comparison using a commercial tonic water and your solution. I just prevailed in getting a poor photograph of the beautiful blue ...
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