A liquid with high boiling point decomposes on simple distillation but it can be steam distilled for its purification. Explain how is it possible?

Answers (1)

Steam distillation is a different type of separation process for temperature sensitive materials like natural organic compounds. What happens with some organic compounds is that they decompose at higher temperatures and thus normal distillation does not suit the purpose. So, steam or water is added to the apparatus and the temperature of the compounds are depressed as a reason of that, evaporation happens at lower temperatures. Steam distillation is useful for separation if substances that are volatile, insoluble in water and have high vapour pressure at the boiling point of water i.e. 100^{\circ}C. Then after distillation is over vapours are condensed and hence constituents separate at ease.

 

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