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Esters are sweet-smelling substances and are used in making perfumes. Suggest some activity and the reaction involved for the preparation of an ester with well labeled diagram.

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Reaction Set up:

Take 1 mL ethanol (absolute alcohol) and 1 mL glacial acetic acid and few drops of concentrated sulphuric acid in a test tube.

Warm the test tube in a water-bath for at least five minutes.

 Pour the contents of the test tube into a beaker containing 20-50 mL of water and smell the resulting mixture.

Sweet smell confirms presence of an ester.

Reaction mixture:

Ethanoic acid + Alcohol in presence of concentrated Sulphuric Acid


CH_3COOH + CH_3CH_2OH \overset{H_{2}SO_4}{\rightarrow}CH_3COOC_2H_5 + H_2O

Conformation Test for ester formation is sweet smell.

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