When I’ve had just one more cigarette…

New Year is the time when many smokers and heavy drinkers will resolve to give up cigarettes or alcohol. Studying addictive behaviours is part of the Health Psychology option, and is a topic of great interest to students, many of whom themselves will already be addicted to nicotine.  Attitudes to smoking and to excessive drinking have changed greatly over the years, as the dangers of addiction became apparent. See here for an insight to exactly how much advertising has altered ...

Esters

An ester is formed from the reaction of an alchol with a carboxylic acid. They are named as followed: eg, Alcohol, Acid eg, Ethanol and Propanic acid Except the alcohol ends in -yl and the acid will end in -oate, making Ethyl Propanoate. The functional group is shown: Image kindly reproduced according to the licence at: http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/File:Ester-general.svg    

Alcohol / Ethanol

  We are all familiar with ethanol, C2H5OH, the drug that society accepts the use of through drinks. I hope, we are also familiar with the many problems that it brings. Social problems aside, ethanol harms and damages the body as it is a toxic and a poison. The body also breaks it down as follows: C2H5OH is oxidised to CH3CHO (ethanal) which is also oxidised to CH3COOH (ethanoic acid) by an enzyme called 'alcohol dehydrogenase'. The ethanoic acid can be reacted with oxygen ...

Ageing Wine

  We have all heard that wine gets better with age, but why?   To start with, it doesn't really improve, it's Chemistry changes. Substances such as .... .... Tannins precipitate and oxidised alcohol (ie, carboxylic acids) combine with ethanol to form esters - which improve the wines aroma. So does it taste better? Well this will depend on other things, such as the type of grape. This posting was adapted from an article in 'Focus Magazine' on sale in June 2010 on page 77.

Potassium dichromate Tests for Primary, Secondary and Tertiary Alcohols

Here are some ideas for some easy test tube reactions that cover redox, intermolecular forces, alcohols, ketones, aldehydes, carboxylic acids and chemical tests. We can use acidified potassium dichromate (K2Cr2O7) solution to distinguish between primary, secondary and tertiary alcohols. As with all the experiments listed on this website, specific experimental details are not given. It is your responsibility to research each method and to carry out a substantial risk analysis. Primary alcohols are oxidised to aldehydes and the carboxylic acids Secondary alcohols are oxidised ...