Fat Trimyristin Experiment

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Introduction: Using solid-liquid extraction the fat trimyristin was successfully isolated from nutmeg. Using a chemical reaction called hydrolysis the isolated trimyristin was converted to myristic acid.

Background: Solid-liquid extractions are common in everyday life and are important in a chemistry laboratory because they involve the separation of an individual compound from mixtures. Using solid-liquid extraction, which separates compounds based on solubility. Trimyristin was isolated from nutmeg using diethyl ether because trimyristin is a nonpolar compound that readily dissolves in diethyl ether, which has a low polarity. To concentrate the solution containing trimyristin distillation was used, which separates compounds based on boiling
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A small amount of trimyristin was used for this part of the experiment, between 0.7-0.8g, was used for the hydrolysis. 25mL of ethanol and 10mL of 2 M NaOH was added to the trimyristin. The ethanol was used to cleave the polar bonds of the trimyristin and the sodium from the NaOH binds to the open oxygen on the trimyristin that formed a compound called sodium myristate. This reaction occurs slowly at room temperature so to increase the reaction rate it was heated under reflux. During reflux the solvent is heated to a boil and to ensure the vapors were not lost they were cooled in a condenser, which had cold water running through it. These cooled vapors condensed and returned to the boiling …show more content…
Once cooled a diluted acidic solution with at 1:1 ratio of HCl to water was added to the solution containing the sodium myristate. This acidic solution was added to form the myristic acid because the sodium on the end of the sodium myristate is replaced with hydrogen. The pH of this new solution was tested, using litmus, and when a drop of the solution was added to the paper it turned red indicating that the solution was acidic which is necessary for the formation of myristic acid. Ice cubes were added to the solution to cool the solution and once all the ice cubes had melted the precipitate was isolated using vacuum filtration. The product was dissolved in warm methanol and dissolved because of solubility rules. Once the methanol had cooled, 5mL of water was added drop wise to the solution causing the myristic acid to crash out of the solution. The solution was cooled in an ice bath and once recrystallization was complete the crystals were collected by vacuum filtration and were allowed to dry over a week so accurate melting points could be

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