Oxidation of Aldehydes to Carboxylic Acids
Oxidation of Aldehydes to Carboxylic Acids: Mechanism
The oxidation of aldehydes to carboxylic acids is a two-step procedure. In the first step, one mol of water is added in the presence of an acidic catalyst to generate a hydrate (geminal 1,1-diol).
Subsequently, the hydrate is oxidized to the carboxylic acid formally eliminating water.
Suitabe oxidizing agents
- Chromium(VI) compounds: CrO3 [or K2Cr2O7]
- Potasssium permanganate: KMnO4 in aqueous solution
- Silver oxide: Ag2O (very mild oxidizing agent with yields up to 98%, but very expensive)
- Hydrogen peroxide: H2O2 (because of epoxidation, the methodology is not compatible with C=C double bonds)
- Peroxy acetic acid: C2H4O3 (not compatible with C=C double bonds because of epoxidation)