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An unknown alcohol is treated with Lucas reagent. Explain how you will determine whether the alcohol is primary, secondary or tertiary. Indicate by chemical equation the reaction - Chemistry

Answer in Brief

An unknown alcohol is treated with Lucas reagent. Explain how you will determine whether the alcohol is primary, secondary or tertiary. Indicate by chemical equation the reaction between isopropyl alcohol and Lucas reagent.

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Solution

Primary, secondary and tertiary alcohols can be distinguished from each other in the laboratory using Lucas reagent (conc. HCl and ZnCl2).

  1. An unknown alcohol is treated with Lucas reagent.
    The reaction involved is: \[\ce{R - OH ->[HCl][ZnCl2] R - Cl}\]
  2. Depending on the observation an unknown alcohol can be identified as primary, secondary or tertiary.
    Test Observation Inference
    Unknown Alcohol + Lucas reagent Reagent turns turbid on heating. Primary alcohol is present.
    Unknown Alcohol + Lucas reagent Reagent turns turbid slowly, without heating. Secondary alcohol is present.
    Unknown Alcohol + Lucas reagent Reagent turns turbid immediately, without heating. Tertiary alcohol is present.
  3. The reaction between isopropyl alcohol and Lucas reagent can be given as:
    \[\begin{array}{cc}
    \ce{CH3 - CH - CH3 + HCl + ZnCl2 -> CH3 - CH - CH3}\\
    \phantom{..}|\phantom{......................................}|\phantom{..}\\
    \phantom{.....}\ce{\underset{\text{Isopropyl alcohol (2° alcohol)}}{OH} \phantom{....................}\underset{\text{Isopropyl chloride}}{Cl}}\phantom{........}
    \end{array}\]
    The reagent will turns turbid slowly, without heating.
Concept: Alcohols and Phenols
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APPEARS IN

SCERT Maharashtra Question Bank 12th Standard HSC Chemistry Maharashtra State Board 2021
Chapter 11 Alcohols, Phenols and Ethers
Short Answer Questions (Type-II) | Q 2
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