Ethanol to Sodium acetate | CH3CH2OH to CH3COONa

Ethanol can be converted to sodium acetate from several steps. Ethanol is converted to acetic acid and then it reacts with sodium hydroxide to prepare sodium acetate. Ethanol is an alcohol with two carbon atoms and sodium acetate is the sodium salt of acetic acid.

Preparation of sodium acetate from ethanol

Ethanol, a common chemical can be found easily in the laboratory. As the first step, ethanol is oxidized to acetic acid by acidic potassium permanganate. As well as, simultaneously permanganate ion is reduced to manganese +2 ion. So, you have to recover, acetic acid from this solution.

CH3CH2OH + MnO4- → CH3COOH + Mn2+

For oxidation, acidic potassium dichromate or acidic potassium chromate can be used.


After oxidation, acetic acid reacts with sodium hydroxide to prepare sodium acetate. As sodium hydroxide, sodium carbonate or sodium bicarbonate can be used to react with acetic acid to prepare sodium acetate.

CH3COOH + Na2CO3 → CH3COONa + H2O + CO2


In those two reactions, carbon dioxide gas is emitted as a by-product.

ethanol to sodium acetate

Sodium hydroxide and acetic acid reaction is a strong base - weak acid reaction.

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