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Organic chemistry extraction lab question: Given a mixture of water and an organic solvent which is...

Organic chemistry extraction lab question:
Given a mixture of water and an organic solvent which is immisxible with water, we have to determine which layer contains the organic solvent.
Why can you not always accurately determine the position of the layer by simply checking the density of water and the organic compound?

Homework Answers

Answer #1

In an immiscible mixture of water and organic solvent, the more dense layer settles as the bottom and the less dense layer remains at the top. Since there exists organic solvents with densities more or less than water so we cannot ascertain the identity of each layer accurately. We can overcome this situation by doing a simple test. Add some liquid drops of any layer to a test tube containing approximately 1 ml of water. If the layer dissolves in water than it is an aqueous layer and if it doesnot than it is an organic layer.

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