Important Processes LEARN AS OCR chemistry A

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Making Ethanol

Hydration of ethene

  • Catalytic hydration of ethene
  • Must be done in the presence of steam and phosphoric acid catalyst (H3PO4).
  • Must be carried out under HIGH TEMPERATURES! and MODERATE PRESSURE!
  • so... 300 degrees C and 60atm.
  • The reaction is an equilibrium therefore it is REVERSIBLE.
  • The conversion of ethene is incomplete. Unreacted gases are passed through the reactor again and recycled. (95% conversion is achieved).



  • Carbohydrates are converted into ethanol and carbon


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