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					                       INORGANIC SYNTHESIS

   In this experiment your objective will be to synthesize an inorganic complex
   compound in pure form and high yield and to discover the chemistry
   involved in the syntheses. You will also determine its paramagnetic
   susceptibility in order to find the number of unpaired electrons present in
   the compound to help determine its structure. You will receive specific
   procedures for the syntheses of your compound prior to the experiment.
   These procedures were developed by research groups and were obtained
   from the chemical literature.

       The information in this write-up includes:
       1. general instructions on the synthesis of your compounds
       2. the location of special equipment and materials
       3. general instructions for recrystallization
       4. general instructions for the determination of the paramagnetic susceptibility
       5. a pre-lab safety worksheet
       6. report sheets for the synthesis and the magnetic measurements

                          GENERAL INSTRUCTIONS


      You have two weeks in which to synthesize your compounds and measure the
magnetic susceptibility. Your product will be turned in along with the report sheets at the
end of the three weeks. The locations of special equipment and materials are listed on the
following pages. You will need to check out certain pieces of equipment from the
stockroom. These have been organized according to synthesis number and can be
checked out as a "kit". All borrowed materials must be returned at the end of each lab
period so plan your work accordingly.
        At the outset of a synthesis you will weigh the compound on which your yield will
be based to the nearest 0.01 g on an analytical balance. This will be the compound which

contains the metal ion of the complex you are synthesizing. Your final product should
also be weighed on an analytical balance, again to the nearest 0.01 g. All other weighing
operations can be carried out satisfactorily on the balances located on the side counters,
unless the quantities are less than about 1 g.
        In general it is much easier to dissolve solids in a small volume of solvent if they
are first finely pulverized in a mortar and pestle. This is usually specified in the
instructions when starting materials are provided in the form of large crystals, but it
should be borne in mind for other steps in the procedure as well.
        Most, but not all, of the compounds which will be synthesized are obtained as nice
crystals. They should be turned-in in this crystalline form and NOT ground up in a
mortar and pestle. Those compounds that are naturally obtained in an amorphous form
are expected to be ground up uniformly before submitting the product. In order to
determine the paramagnetic suspectibility the material on which the measurement is made
must be ground up, but only a very small amount of material is needed for this.
        For reasons given in the RECRYSTALLIZATION instructions it is not feasible in
most cases for you to actually determine the purity of your product; however, it should be
rather obvious if the product is damp, or if it smells of the solvent used for
recrystallization. This state of affairs would represent gross contamination.
        Each product should be turned-in in a l0-dram vial with a plastic cap. These are
available in the lab. Each vial should be CLEARLY labeled, in ink, with (a) your name
(b) lab section (c) synthesis number (d) name of compound (e) mass of product. Label
tape that is meant for this purpose is available in the lab.


1.   Needed solvents will be available in one gallon stainless steel safety cans on the
     side shelf. Take only the amount that you need.
2.   Needed acids and bases will be available, along with a few reagents, on special trays
     on the side shelf.
3.   Evaporating dishes, Büchner funnels (and paper), mortars and pestles are available
     in the stockroom.
4.   Rectangular plastic boxes that can be used to hold crushed ice for cooling baths are
     located on the side shelf.
5.   Hot plates and steam baths are distributed throughout the lab.

6.   Desiccators with CaC12 or special desiccants will be made available as needed on
     request to lab instructor or assistant.
7.   Drying ovens set for 55°C and 110°C are located along the wall and are labeled as
     to their temperatures.
8.   A refrigerator is available for long term crystallizations (overnight or from one
     week to the next). Containers must be covered with Parafilm or aluminum foil and
     labeled with your name.



        An impure solid may often be purified by recrystallization. This usually involves
dissolving the impure solid in a hot solvent (generally at its boiling point) and then letting
the desired material crystallize out as the solution cools. Low concentration impurities
remain in solution. The amount of hot solvent used should be just enough to dissolve the
material so that as much of the desired product as possible will crystallize when the
solution is cooled. It is important to choose a solvent in which the material being purified
has a high temperature coefficient of solubility, as well as low solubility when cold, so as
to minimize loss of material. Usually the solvent is also chosen so that the impurities will
remain in solution when cold. In some circumstances it may be desirable to choose a
solvent in which the impurities are insoluble when the solution is hot, in which case they
are filtered out of the hot solution before letting the desired material recrystallize.
         The following solvents are commonly used for recrystallizations: acetone,
cyclohexane, ethanol, ethyl acetate, hexane (sometimes referred to as "petroleum ether"),
methanol, toluene, and water. Binary mixtures of these are sometimes used. Since most of
these solvents are highly inflammable all heating should be done on an electric hot plate,
usually set at "low".

A general procedure which may often be used for recrystallization is the following:

1.    Preparing the solution. Put the impure solid in a beaker of appropriate size, add
      solvent in small amounts, and maintain gentle agitation and swirling on the hot
      plate as the solution is brought to the boiling point. If the solid does not completely
      dissolve, additional solvent is added and the solution is reheated to the boiling
      point. Cease addition of solvent when the material has just dissolved. Be sure to
      wait sufficiently long between additions of solvent so as to achieve saturation,
      otherwise too much solvent will be used and there will be excessive loss of
2.    Cooling the solution. Cool the solution slowly, with occasional swirling, to room
      temperature (or to 0° in an ice bath if appropriate) in order to encourage the
      formation of large, easily filtered crystals of the product. Really large crystals can
      be expected only with very slow cooling and without any agitation at all. Unless it
      is necessary to do so to avoid excessive loss of the desired material, it is simpler to
      cool only to room temperature and the chances of reincorporating impurities is
      lessened. Some substances crystallize extremely slowly, and several hours or days
      at low temperature (refrigeration is practical) may be required to maximize your
3.   Filtering the solution. The recrystallized material is usually removed from the
     supernatant solution by suction filtration, using an appropriate filter mounted on a
     side-neck filter flask. Be sure to clamp the filter flask to a ring stand. The
     apparatus has a high center of mass and therefore an unsupported rig has an
     unfortunate tendency to tip over. The most common filters used for this purpose are
     a sintered-glass funnel or a porcelain Büchner funnel that requires a piece of filter
     paper. It is important that a size is chosen which covers all the holes yet lies
     absolutely flat (i.e., does not curl slightly up the sides of the funnel). Select a funnel
     size appropriate to the quantity of crystals to be filtered. When using a Büchner
     funnel, the positioned filter paper should be moistened with the solvent which
     is being employed and suction applied before starting the transfer of your
     crystal. If you are filtering an ice-cold solution, you should also pre-cool your filter
     funnel; a refrigerator is simplest, but an ice bath may be used with care taken to
     avoid getting water in the solution unless your solvent is water. When all of your
     crystals have been transferred to the filter funnel (with the help of a spatula) and
     sucked reasonably dry, press them down on the filter with your spatula in order to
     assist in the sucking off of additional solution. This step, along with the first two,

     may be repeated as often as it is judged necessary to remove the impurities. Each
     repetition will naturally incur some additional loss of desired material.
4.   Washing the crystals. The small amount of adhering solution which contains
     soluble impurities may be removed by stopping the suction, adding a few ml of
     fresh, cold (ice-cold if appropriate) solvent, stirring up the crystals with your
     spatula, and then re-applying the suction. When you use a Büchner funnel take care
     that you do not poke a hole in the filter paper; a flattened glass rod spatula will
     minimize this possibility. This washing process may be repeated several times, as
     appropriate. Adding portions of wash solution while the suction is on, or without
     stirring up the crystals, simply leads to channeling and ineffective washing.
5.   Drying the crystals. Dry the crystals as much as possible on the filter by the
     application of suction; then transfer them to an appropriate size of watch glass or
     beaker. Oftentimes complete drying can be achieved by just letting the material
     stand, in a relatively thin layer, in a well ventilated place for several hours. Of
     course if the crystals are thermally stable, do not oxidize, and do not melt, they can
     be dried in an oven. When a high-boiling solvent has been used, time can be saved
     by drying the crystals in a vacuum desiccator connected, through a protective
     freeze-out (liquid N2 or dry ice) trap, to a vacuum pump. Crystals that have been
     recrystallized from solvents other than water cannot be dried in an ordinary
     desiccator because desiccants commonly remove only water. Some desiccants
     (P4O10 and concentrated H2SO4 for example) will remove volatile basic solvents,
     and others (CaO and NaOH) will remove volatile acidic solvents.
6.   Checking for purity. A common way to check the purity of a compound is to
     determine its melting point and then compare it with the value reported in chemical
     handbooks or research papers. If a published value is not available, it is common
     practice to recrystallize again the compound and to redetermine its melting point. If
     it is the same as before, it is likely to be pure. A compound which has a melting
     point that is lower than the published value (or which is not really a "point" but a
     "range) can be judged to be impure or to decompose on heating; recrystallization
     should be performed. If a compound decomposes instead of melting, the melting
     point can't be used for characterization. If the compound is organic in nature, it may
     be analyzed for % carbon and % hydrogen and these values then compared to those
     expected for the compound you were crystallizing. In the case of inorganic complex
     compounds, a common method of analysis is to determine the percentage of the
     central metal ion present and then to compare this value with the expected value.

           Most of the compounds synthesized by the class in this experiment decompose
     before they melt, hence melting point cannot be used as an indicator of purity.
     Also, many of the compounds cannot be simply or satisfactorily recrystallized, and
     in these cases the directions do not include this step. And since analyzing for the
     central metal ion is in most cases too time-consuming, you will basically have to
     settle for nice looking dry crystals of uniform color and crystal form.


        An atom, molecule, or ion that contains one or more unpaired electrons will
possess a permanent magnetic moment, µ. Under some circumstances another source of
magnetic moment (usually very small) results from the orbital angular momentum of
electrons in incompletely filled subshells. In this experiment we shall assume that the
observed paramagnetic susceptibility results only from unpaired electron spins.
        If a given molecular entity possesses n unpaired electrons, its magnetic moment,
µ, will be given by
                               µ = [n (n+2)]1/2 B.M.                            (l)

with units expressed in "Bohr Magnetons" (B.M.). One Bohr Magneton is actually a
collection of fundamental constants:

           one B.M. = eh/4me = 9.27 x 10-21 erg gauss-l = 9.27 x 10-24 J Tesla-l.

where e is the charge on the electron, h is Planck's constant, and me is the mass of the
electron. (Knowledge of the Bohr Magneton is not needed in order to carry out the
        Normally, the molecular magnetic moments of paramagnetic substances are
randomly oriented with respect to each other and there is no net observable magnetic
moment. In the presence of an applied magnetic field, these magnetic moments tend to
align themselves with respect to the applied field and there is an observable interaction,
even though the randomizing effect of thermal kinetic motion prevents a large interaction
at normal temperatures. It is this interaction, measured by means of a balance, that is
studied in this experiment.
        The molar magnetic susceptibility (m) has been derived from theoretical
considerations and shown to be composed of two parts, as follows

                              m = N2 µ2/3RT + Na                                    (2)

Here N is Avogadro's number, R is the gas constant, and T is the absolute temperature.
The second term Na represents the molar diamagnetic susceptibility of the molecule and
the first term represents the effective molar paramagnetic susceptibility at a given
temperature. If m is measured experimentally, then the magnetic moment can be
determined by rearranging equation (2) and solving, as follows.

                      µ2 = (3RT/N2) (m - Na)

                      µ = (3RT/N2)l/2 (m - Na )1/2

                      µ = 2.824 [T (m - Na)]1/2 B.M.                                 (3)

In our experiment, Na is very small and can be ignored. For more accurate work, Na can
be found in published tables. From the experimental value of µ it is possible to determine
the number of unpaired electrons that have caused the observed paramagnetic
susceptibility by using equation (1).
       The experimentally observed molar magnetic susceptibility (m) needed for use in
equation (3) can be obtained from first principles and an exact knowledge of applied field
strengths, etc., but it is more common to calibrate the experimental apparatus using a
stable, well-defined compound for which the molar magnetic susceptibility is already
known. This is the method used in this experiment. The molar magnetic susceptibility is
calculated from the observed gram magnetic susceptibility by simply multiplying by the
molar mass, M.

                              m = g.M                                               (4)

       There are several methods for measuring g including the Gouy method and the
Faraday method where the apparent change in mass of a sample is measured when an
external magnetic field is applied. A new type of measurement of g has been developed
by D. F. Evans in which the force that the sample exerts on a pair of suspended
permanent magnets is measured. This is the method employed in our experiment. The
MSB-1 balance measures the change in current required to keep a set of suspended
permanent magnets in balance while their magnetic field interacts with that of the sample.

A reading must be taken with the sample tube filled (R) and with the sample tube empty
(Ro). The gram magnetic susceptibility is then found from

                              g = (L/m) [C(R - Ro)]                                      (5)

where L is the sample length in centimeters, m is the sample mass in grams, and C is the
calibration constant for the balance. (We have ignored the small contribution from the
magnetic susceptibility of the air in the empty sample tube.) The length L and the mass m
are measurements to be made independently of the MSB-1 balance measurement as
explained below. The calibration constant C is determined by measuring a substance
with a known g, namely Hg[Co(SCN)4]. Its gram magnetic susceptibility is given by

                              g = (4.985 x 10-3) / (T + 10)                         (6)

where T is in Kelvin. Given the values of L, m, and Ro for the calibration sample
provided, measurement of R and T for this sample will allow the determination of C
using equations (5) and (6). Once C is known, a measurement of R, Ro, L, m, and T for
your inorganic synthesis product will permit you to determine g. The molar magnetic
susceptibility, the magnetic moment, and the number of unpaired electrons for your
inorganic compound can then be calculated via equation (4), (3), and (1), respectively.


1.   The MSB-1 balance must be turned on and allowed to warm up for 30 minutes.
     (The instructor should have done this before the beginning of the laboratory period.)
2.   Obtain a sample tube from the stockroom. Handle it carefully because it is easy
     to break and costs quite a bit. Make sure the tube is clean and dry. Using the
     analytical balance next to the MSB-1 balance determine the mass of the empty
     sample tube.
3.   Make sure the MSB-1 balance is set on the 1 setting. Carefully adjusting the zero
     knob, zero the MSB-1 balance. Place the empty sample tube in the hole at the top
     of the MSB-1 balance and read Ro on the digital meter. Remove your sample tube.

4.   Using a mortar and pestle, carefully crush your sample to very fine particles. Crush
     enough sample to fill the sample tube to a height of between 2.5 and 3.5 cm. Using
     the tools provided, fill your sample tube to 3.0 + 0.5 cm. Tap the bottom of your
     sample tube on the mat provided several times to assure good packing of your
     sample. Using the analytical balance, measure the mass of your sample plus sample
5.   Zero the MSB-1 balance. Place your sample tube now loaded with sample in the
     MSB-1 balance and read R from the digital meter. Take your sample out of the
     MSB-1 balance and tap the bottom of it on the mat several times. Place your
     sample back in the MSB-1 balance and again read R. Continue this process until
     subsequent readings agree to within + 3 R units
6.   Remove your sample tube and rezero the MSB-1 balance. Measure the length of the
     sample in the tube with the accurate ruler provided and determine an estimate of the
     uncertainty in your measurement.
7.   Measure R for the standard sample provided in a manner similar to that described
     in 5. Remove the standard and rezero the MSB-1 balance. Record L, m, and Ro for
     the standard.
8.   Measure the room temperature from the thermometer in the room.
9.   Empty your sample tube into your product vial. Clean out the remaining sample in
     your sample tube first with an appropriate solvent (usually water) to dissolve the
     sample. Then rinse the sample tube with acetone. Dry the sample tube by running
     air through the tube using the vacuum line, tubing and glass tube provided. Return
     the sample tube to the stockroom.

NAME___________________________________ LAB SECTION_______________
SYNTHESIS # ____________________


Before you will be allowed to begin your syntheses, you are required to look up the hazard
and toxicological information for the chemicals you will be using. SUMMARIZE the
important hazards and toxicological effects of each compound on the form below. This
information can be found in the Material Safety Data Sheets collected at the beginning of the
semester or on the various websites also identified at that time. If you have any questions
regarding the safe handling and use of these chemicals, you are encouraged to discuss this
with your lab instructor.

                                      HAZARD                      TOXICOLOGICAL
         CHEMICAL                  IDENTIFICATION                  INFORMATION

NAME___________________________________ LAB SECTION_______________


Synthesis No.
Name of Product
Formula of Product
Color of Product
Weight of Product Obtained
Molecular Weight of Product
Weight of starting compound
that contained paramagnetic ion
Percent yield (based on starting
compound containing paramagnetic ion)

(Include sample calculations for percent yield on the back.)

Write balanced ionic equations for all reactions used in the syntheses of your compounds.

With this report sheet also turn in your products in 10 dram vials with plastic caps. Label
vials with (a) your name, (b) lab section, (c) synthesis number, (d) name of compound, (e)
weight of product.

NAME____________________________________LAB SECTION________________


Name of compound______________________________ Synthesis No.______________

Formula of compound______________________________________________________


Weight of sample cell with HgCo(NCS)4 ___________                  R       ___________

Weight of empty sample cell                ___________             Ro      ___________

Weight of HgCo(NCS)4                       ___________

Length of HgCo(NCS)4 sample cell           ___________             C       ___________

Weight of sample cell with sample          ___________             R       ___________

Weight of empty sample cell                ___________             Ro      ___________

Weight of sample                           ___________

Length of sample                           ___________             T(K)    ___________

For compound prepared (calculations on back of sheet):

               g                            _______________

               m                            _______________

                                            _______________

               n (experimental )             _____________

               n (theoretical)       _____________

               Probable central metal atom
               orbital hybridization       _____________

On the back, l) draw the molecular orbital (MO) splitting diagram for the d electrons, and
2) sketch the molecular structure of the complex ion. If your product might be a mixture
of two isomers, give the structures of both isomers.


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