Sciencemadness Discussion Board

Acetic acid from acetone

Gemlingur - 13-9-2016 at 03:36

I've made both acetic acid and acetic anhydride by pyrolising acetone amd bubbling it through water, but would it be possible to oxidise the methane that gets made by the pyrolisis without the ketene interfering in some way? So that all in all a mole if acetone would make a mole of acetic acid and another of CO2?

Praxichys - 13-9-2016 at 05:01

It is next to impossible on the lab scale. Any method would certainly require high pressure and precise flow control. The easiest way I can think of involves halogens, which would be very inefficient and wasteful.

This molar inefficiency is exactly the reason why acetone pyrolysis has largely been abandoned as an industrial-scale method for making Ac2O. It's best just to let the methane go; acetone is cheap.

DDTea - 22-11-2016 at 16:29

Functionalization of methane is one of the grand challenges in catalysis. Methane to methanol or anything liquid... Do that in an economical way and I'm sure there's a spot in the National Academy of Sciences for you.

EDIT: For some academic background, here's the grand daddy of this research--the Shilov system.

The Periana system ( ) is one of the most efficient processes for such transformations reported to date. In the past few months, higher activities in the conversion of methane to methyl bisulfate were reported by Zimmermann et. al. using oleum over potassium tetrachloroplatinate. ( ) .

[Edited on 11-23-16 by DDTea]