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Solvent Polarity Cheat Sheet


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#1 Frequency

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Posted 26 February 2010 - 11:10 PM

Solvent Polarity Cheat Sheet
Determining appropriate solvents for chemical extraction and isolation

When a clandestine chemist attempts to determine an appropriate solvent for use in extracting and eventually isolating specific molecules, many variables come into play. Two of which stand out in relative importance: Polarity and Miscibility.

A molecule is considered non-polar if it's atoms shared within the molecule are shared proportionally equally. However, if one of the atoms being shared in the molecule is pulling harder (connectivity strength) than the other, it's considered polar. Certain atoms have stronger electrical charges than others, results in either a balanced electrical charge in a molecule, or an imbalanced once. Balanced = Non-polar / Unbalanced = Polar.

With that being said, if your desired molecule is polar you want a polar solvent to dissolve it. If you want to wash your reaction before extraction, use a non-olar solvent. If your sought after chemical is non-polar, then wash with polar solvents and extract with non-polar. It's that easy, like dissolves like.

So what are the most commonly available solvents and their polarities? Which ones are miscible with water and which ones aren't? After all, if one of the steps in our workup involves using water as a wash or extraction solvent, we wouldn't want our other solvents dissolving in it, making it unable to extract, would we?

Polar Solvents


  • Acetic Acid
  • Acetone
  • Acetonitrile
  • Dimethylformamide (DMF)
  • Dimethylsulfoxide (DMSO)
  • Ethanol
  • Methanol
  • H2O (Water)

Non-Polar Solvents


  • Benzene
  • Butanol
  • Butyl Acetate
  • Carbon Tetrachloride
  • Chloroform
  • Cyclohexane
  • 1,2-Dichlroethane
  • Dichlromethane (DCM)
  • Dioxane
  • Ethyl Acetate
  • Diethyl Ether
  • Heptane
  • Hexane
  • Methyl-t-butyl Ether
  • 2-Butanone
  • Pentane
  • Propanol
  • Isopropanol
  • Diisopropyl Ether
  • Tetrahydrofuran (THF)
  • Toluene
  • Trichloroethylene (TCE)
  • Xylene

Water Miscibility

Highly Miscible in Water


  • DMSO
  • DMF
  • Acetic Acid
  • Acetonitrile
  • Ethanol
  • Methanol
  • Acetone
  • Dioxane
  • Propanol
  • THF
  • Isopropanol.

Moderately Miscible in Water


  • Methyl-t-butyl ether
  • Butyl Acetate
  • Ethyl Acetate
  • 2-Butanone.

Any other solvents listed in the polarity index above have very low micibility in water and are appropriate for aqueous phase seperation. pwnd!

Much love homies.

Freq


Edited by wharfrat, 19 June 2016 - 04:03 PM.

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#2 SpiritMolecule

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Posted 26 February 2010 - 11:36 PM

I just tried to shoot you rep for that. I cant cuz I keep giving you rep for your highly informative posts. So heres to you, Frequency. Very nice
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#3 kcmoxtractor

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Posted 27 February 2010 - 02:12 AM

Damn, I can't rep you again yet... add limonene to your list also, it has a low polarity and is only moderately miscible in water.

#4 Ferretious

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Posted 27 February 2010 - 02:43 AM

Damn, I can't rep you again yet... add limonene to your list also, it has a low polarity and is only moderately miscible in water.

I have the same problem! Stop doing such great work frequency!:bow:
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#5 whatchamacallit

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Posted 27 February 2010 - 06:14 AM

Great post! Sorry I can't rep you again, either! :thumbup:

#6 TurkeyRanch

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Posted 27 February 2010 - 06:19 AM

Many thanks Freq! :bow::bow:

Peace! :pirate:

TR

#7 SilvrHairDevil

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Posted 27 February 2010 - 06:48 AM

if the others can't rep you, at least I can

#8 Oroborous

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Posted 27 February 2010 - 08:50 AM

if the others can't rep you, at least I can

Me too! Great thread man! :thumbup:

#9 EmmisonJ

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Posted 27 February 2010 - 11:12 AM

same problem as the others, i can't rep you yet either. but here's one of these :bow:
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#10 Frequency

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Posted 27 February 2010 - 12:19 PM

Thanks for showing love everyone. Happy to add to the knowledge base.

Kcmo: Limonene is non-polar actually, this attribute alone makes it ideal for it's use in degreasing applications. Unfortunately it's also completely miscible in many other solvents such as Acetone, Petroleum Ether, Gasoline, Mineral Spirits, Benzene, Toluene, Xylene, Chloroform, Methanol, Ethanol, IPA, and more.

Omitted are Glycerin and Propylene Glycol in which Limonene is only very slightly miscible. This might be interesting information attempting to do an environmentally-friendly version of the smokeless cigg for marijuana as Shroom57 and ClownFish159 were hypothesizing in another thread.

Perhaps, however, it might be a rare application and not very practical. Time will tell along with the decreasing availability of other solvents. Much love.
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#11 opiatoker

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Posted 01 March 2010 - 06:52 AM

I just tried to shoot you rep for that. I cant cuz I keep giving you rep for your highly informative posts. So heres to you, Frequency. Very nice

haha!! dammit!! same exact thing..

oh well, another rep + un documented for ya frequency!
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#12 opiatoker

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Posted 01 March 2010 - 07:00 AM

Damn, I can't rep you again yet... add limonene to your list also, it has a low polarity and is only moderately miscible in water.

also turpentine.

turpentine (apparently) will lock up with your water trapping the alkaloids in it, and takes days to separate, even if you think adding some naptha will help... no. it gets locked up with it. :cry:

and when you do finally get it out, takes days or weeks to evaporate, and the boiling point is higher than that of water, so that is not an option.

however i have read that there is a turpentine from a certain tree in China (if i remember correctly) which is almost pure heptane.

#13 roscoe

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Posted 01 March 2010 - 01:27 PM

from all the slow kids in class, thank you much.:headbang:
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#14 SilvrHairDevil

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Posted 01 March 2010 - 01:44 PM

also turpentine.

turpentine (apparently) will lock up with your water trapping the alkaloids in it, and takes days to separate, even if you think adding some naptha will help... no. it gets locked up with it. :cry:

and when you do finally get it out, takes days or weeks to evaporate, and the boiling point is higher than that of water, so that is not an option.

however i have read that there is a turpentine from a certain tree in China (if i remember correctly) which is almost pure heptane.




http://www.absolutea...pics/Turpentine

"Turpentine distilled from the California pines such as Ponderosa Pine (Pinus ponderosa) and Gray Pine (Pinus sabiniana) yield a form of turpentine that is almost pure Heptane."

#15 Shadowlord

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Posted 01 March 2010 - 02:52 PM

Another great thread Freq!~
Good info to have around, saves a lot of time googling this stuff.
:bow:
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#16 Gnarcat420

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Posted 01 March 2010 - 06:07 PM

+rep:headbang:
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#17 greenie

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Posted 01 March 2010 - 06:39 PM

priceless information
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#18 Light-Being

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Posted 01 March 2010 - 06:50 PM

Nice info. It would be more complete though if you also included solvents that are essentially immiscible in water. (despite your footnote about it, it would be more useful as a "cheat sheet" if that info were in list form)

Just a suggestion.
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#19 Guest_beautypath_*

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Posted 02 March 2010 - 01:53 AM

Sweet!!!

#20 Battlr

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Posted 08 April 2010 - 01:16 AM

Very helpful, and like many of the others -- Cant rep you at this time.

xD

-Battlr
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