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Analysis of Sulphur Dioxide Content in Wine

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  • Essay length: 723 words
  • Submitted: 03/05/2011
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AS and A Level Physical Chemistry

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EXPERIMENT ( 3 )

Topic : Analysis of Sulphur Dioxide Content in Wine

Introduction : In the presence of atmospheric oxygen, the alcohol content of wine can be converted to ethanoic acid making the wines sour & unpalatable. Even small amount of air, over a period of time, can adversely affect wines. The problem can be minimized by the introduction of a suitable reductant which will preferentially react with oxygen. One such reductant is sulphur dioxide but because it is toxic & pungent in odour, limits are set on the amount of "free" sulphur dioxide allowed in wine. Most of the preservative present in wine is "fixed" in the form of NaHSO3. Although this can act as a source of sulphur dioxide, the actual amount of free sulphur dioxide is quite low.

In this experiment, the amount of total available SO2 in the wine, irrespective of its actual form in the sample is determined. The method involves first the conversion of all SO2 into SO32-.

Acidification of the solution then liberates all SO2 : SO32-(aq) + 2 H+(aq) --> SO2(aq) + H2O(l)

SO2 is then titrated with iodine solution : SO2(aq)

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