Fractional Distillation Lab Conclusion

Fractional Distillation Lab Conclusion – Brandon Skenandore

Lab conclusion for Fractional Distillation lab.


The purpose of this laboratory experiment was to fractionally distill waste acetone from last semester using a self-prepared apparatus in order to purify it back into pure acetone, as well as to learn how to use a refractometer to obtain a refractive index of our purified acetone and compare that value to a literature value to determine if the compound was indeed acetone. The purified liquid’s experimental boiling point, density, and refractive index was 51º C, .7903 g/mL, and 1.359820 respectively. The literature values compared were 56º C, .7845 g/mL, and 1.358820. The refractive index difference was very close as well as the density, but the temperature difference was quite significant. An experimental flaw could have been that the waste acetone had compounds in it that lowered the boiling point of the mixture, resulting in a lower boiling point. Another reason could be the difference in atmospheric pressure between the experimental boiling point and the literature boiling point, lowering the experimental boiling point. Since the difference between the experimental and literature refractive index for pure acetone was only .0010, this compound is indeed acetone.


Brandon Skenandore