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Carbon - How do it know?

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  • toddk63
    I was puzzled how carbon treating neutral spirit could remove heads (lighter stuff) and tails (heavier stuff), but leave the middle. Some sort of molecular
    Message 1 of 1 , Dec 16, 2008
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      I was puzzled how carbon treating neutral spirit could remove heads
      (lighter stuff) and tails (heavier stuff), but leave the middle. Some
      sort of molecular "band-pass" filter?...unlikely.

      Now I know how it know! I work with a bunch of Chem E's.
      They helped me sort it out.

      Ethyl Acetate(heads)88.1 Molecular Weight(MW) 77.1C Boiling
      Point(BP)

      Ethanol 46.1 MW, 78.4C BP

      2-Propanol (Tails) 60.1 MW, 82.3 BP

      I assumed BP was related to MW, but its not. The
      compound of the three above with the highest MW is
      Ethyl Acetate @ 88.1 MW. It's BP is real close to
      ethanol, so it is difficult to separate with
      distillation. 2-Propanol on the other hand has a BP
      far enough away for it not to be a huge problem unless
      you really screw up. And if you do screw up, you still
      have a chance to remove it with carbon because its MW
      is larger than ethanol.

      Now on to the carbon. "Distillers" carbon is designed
      to have a pore size that traps the large molecules
      (ethyl acetate and maybe propanol) while letting the
      smallest (ethanol) pass through.

      Tah!

      Todd K.
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