Conduct a practical investigation to measure and reliably compare the enthalpy of combustion for a range of alcohols

  • Alcohols react with oxygen to produce carbon dioxide and water. Since all alcohols have a –OH group present, they give the same reaction.
  • However, the amount of heat released during the combustion reaction differs from alcohol to alcohol.
  • For alcohols having higher number of carbons, a larger amount of bond energy needs to be crossed to break the bonds of the reactants to form the final products. Thus, the enthalpy increases with the increase of carbon number.
  • For example, energy released in the combustion reaction of methanol is 726 kJ/mole and in case of ethanol it is 1367 kJ/mole.