Tert-butanol

So, I haven’t talked much about chemistry on the blog before, but today, I used a very interesting compound and want to tell everyone about it. I think this post will be the first in my “Adventures in Chemistry!” series of posts (note the Tag! Ooooooh).

The name of this compound is tertiary-butanol, or tBuOH, or t-Butanol for short. It’s a relative of ethanol, (the stuff that you find in beer, wine and liquah), methanol (antifreeze) and isopropanol (rubbing alcohol). The main difference here is that there is an additional carbon atom in each molecule, for a total of four (ethanol has two carbons per molecule, isopropanol three, and methanol just one). ANYWAY, the thing that is interesting about this stuff is that it has a melting point of 25 degrees C. For those of you true ‘Merican’s, that’s about 77 degrees F. So, that means at room temp, it’s a solid, but when you touch it, it melts. I wanted to weigh it out, so you can imagine my dilemma – weigh it as a solid or a liquid? Turns out liquid is easier, so that’s what I did. I submerged my bottle of t-butanol in some warm water, melted enough to draw it into my pipet and weighed out the liquid. Piece of cake. Except that the pipet was room temp, so crystals formed on the inside of it. Regardless, I pressed on and managed the addition with no problems. And thus, the first of our Adventures in Chemistry! – exciting stuff, right?

In other news, Claire’s been back in B-town for one week, and it’s wonderful having her back. Both Lucy and I are terribly excited to spend time with her. Date nights ahoy! Last week was a low key date night, with some sparkling wine and conversation on the couch; we had lots of catching up to do. This week – BBQ chicken and Ramesco Vegetables on the grill, and a movie from Netflix (Happy-Go-Lucky). Until next time!

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~ by gsazama on June 30, 2009.

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