Synthesis of Aspirin

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Nahom Efrem                16/06/2009

        Synthesis of Aspirin

The aim of this practical is to carry out a chemical reaction between salicylic acid with anhydride. This will allow us to calculate the percentage yield. The chemical company for which you work has developed a new laboratory method for synthesising aspirin which produces a high yield of pure product. Before investing the large amount of money it would take to scale up the process for mass production of aspirin, the directors want to know if this new method is significantly better than existing methods, in terms of the percentage yield and purity of aspirin produced.


Aspirin, which is sometimes called acetylsalicylic acid, was first made in 1893 by a German chemist Felix Hofmann. Aspirin is classified as organic ester and organic acid. It is mostly used in medicine like pain killers and also they are used for reducing fever. Aspirin is made by reacting salicylic acid with acetic anhydride. The human generation already knew how useful salicylic acid for pain. It was until the 19th century when we learned how to make mass production of aspirin and how to cope with the toxic side effects.

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Aspirin has many pharmaceutical uses; the most important is the cure for any kind of pain. It can also treat arthritis because it has an anti-inflammatory effect and also reduce fever. One of the majors side effects gastritis this gives stomach aches.


Melting Point apparatus


  • At the start of the practical we had to add 3 grams of ...

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