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May 26, 2024
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Hi, I need help! : )

  • Benzoquinone Wacker Oxidation of Safrole in Methanol to yield MDP2P
  • From Erowid.org/archive/rhodium/chemistry/wacker.benzo-meoh.html
  • By Methyl Man
Stuck on 5% NaOH Wash #2. Wash #1 was as expected, resulting in a very black top “aqueous?” layer that was discarded. When washing the bottom layer that presumably contains DCM and the Ketone with a 2nd 5% NaOH a massive amount of, I think, hydroquinone appeared. I drained the bottom layer to wash a third time, kept the top layer from 5%NaOH wash #2 just in case, and washed all the hydroquinone easily from the sep funnel. After adding the 3rd 5% NaOH Wash, I have a muddy green emulsion with zero separation.

Questions: Why didn’t the hydroquinone appear in the 1st wash?

Are my instructions 100% accurate that the top layer from the 1st 5%NaOH wash was “Aqueous” and therefore did NOT contain the Ketone and could be discarded? Or did I just throw away all my hard work and money?

Why does the emulsion seem to be getting worse with each NaOH wash instead of better?

What’s the best way to break up this emulsion?

Thanks. Its frustrating. Everything was going well up to this point.
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