Redox and electrochemistry > alcohol

Potassium manganate(VII) powder is sprinkled on to a burning mixture of hydrogen peroxide solution and ethanol. In the exothermic reaction which follows, a series of loud, but harmless, bangs are heard as the oxygen that is evolved increases the rate of burning.

In this demonstration experiment, a mixture of glycerol (propane-1,2,3-triol) and potassium manganate(VII) crystals bursts into flame, giving off clouds of steam, after a short time lag.

Using a microscale well-plate, students add acidified dichromate(VI) to primary, secondary and tertiary alcohols to observe the difference in their oxidation reactions.

In this quick demonstration of the reaction between ethanol and potassium dichromate(VI), ethanol vapour is passed through a U-tube packed with potassium dichromate crystals, moistened with dilute sulfuric acid, to produce a visible change from the orange of chromium(VI), through brown, to the green of chromium(III). This was the reaction used in earlier forms of 'breathalyser'.

A pool of acidified potassium dichromate(VI) is placed in a Petri dish. A few drops of cyclohexanol are added to the pool. There are clear signs of reaction as the cyclohexanone is formed.