why benzyl alcohol is is not converted directly to phenylethanoic acid on oxidation

Asked by  | 19th Dec, 2008, 07:03: PM

Expert Answer:

Oxidation of alcohol first forms an aldehyde and then carboxylic acid.Both aldehyde and carboxylic acid contains the same number of carbon atoms. Benzyl alcohol on oxidation forms an aldehyde and then benzoic acid. Phenylethanoic acid has one additional carbon atom as compared to benzyl alcohol. Hence benzyl alcohol is not converted directly to phenylethanoic acid on oxidation. It requires addition of  cyanide group which would increase the number of carbon atom on the ring.

Answered by  | 14th Jan, 2009, 09:43: AM

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