top of page
new sciteach chem small.png

Carboxylic Acids and Esters



Carboxylic acids & Derivatives

AQA Content

(See Specification)

Specification Notes

The structures of:
carboxylic acids

Carboxylic acids are weak acids but will liberate CO2 from carbonates.
Carboxylic acids and alcohols react, in the presence of an acid catalyst, to give esters.
Common uses of esters (eg in solvents, plasticisers, perfumes and food flavourings).
Vegetable oils and animal fats are esters of propane-1,2,3-triol (glycerol).
Esters can be hydrolysed in acid or alkaline conditions to form alcohols and carboxylic acids or salts of carboxylic acids.
Vegetable oils and animal fats can be hydrolysed in alkaline conditions to give soap (salts of long-chain carboxylic acids) and glycerol.
Biodiesel is a mixture of methyl esters of long-chain carboxylic acids.
Biodiesel is produced by reacting vegetable oils with methanol in the presence of a catalyst.



36 Organic Reactions: Reactions for A Level
bottom of page