Author Topic: explanation of Al Hg Amalgum  (Read 8471 times)

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explanation of Al Hg Amalgum
« on: November 07, 2002, 08:59:00 PM »
Can someone explain what happens in the reaction, and what are the best chemicals to clean and extract the freebase after the amalgum is finished.


  • Guest
Al/ Hg basics
« Reply #2 on: November 07, 2002, 09:24:00 PM »

+ a whole lot more in the search engine

I'm kind of 'on the fence' as to whether or not this should be in the newbee forum, but today is a great day.....

The simplest explanation of what is going on, and I assume you are talking about the nitro Al/Hg, is that the nitromethane is reduced to a primary amine (methylamine) by the amalgamated aluminum which condenses with the ketone to form an imine.  This imine is further reduced to the secondary amine, also by the Al/Hg.  Give you three guesses what the secondary amine is  ;D

The best (most commonly preferred) solvents to use are toluene or xylene, and an NaOH wash, a brine (saturated salt solution) wash, and a water wash are customary.  Some people like to dry the solvent, prior to making the hydrochloride salt, with baked epsoms; but if your yeilds are good you probably won't need to bother.

EDIT: However, my timing seems to be horrible.