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Old 07-21-2008, 05:09 PM   #1
polarbearbrewing
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Default homebrewing techniques in organic chemistry??

well today i was sitting in my pre-lab lecture and in this experiment, we needed to ensure that there was excess sodium hypochlorite (bleach) in the alcohol solution in order to obtain the highest yield of product and the technique we used was to place some of the solution on an iodide/starch paper and if it turned bluish-black, that meant there was still starch in the solution and we were good to go.

everyone else was just staring off into space obviously bored from the lecture but i kept thinking about how this is the same procedure used to determine whether all the starches of the mash have been converted into sugars but instead iodine is used and we are looking for the opposite result (no blue/black color)

anyways i just thought that was really interesting and cool....everyone says brewing isnt rocket science, but man there sure is some complex chemistry going down in your mash tun...maybe a little out there for some but hey what can i say im a pharmacy major and some of this nerdy science really gets me going

p.s. i got to use a $600,000 H-NMR machine today in the same experiment


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Old 07-21-2008, 05:25 PM   #2
Parker36
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If you want to get really nerdy dig around, there are lewis structures of different alpha and beta acids floating around on the boards somewhere. As someone who has been through all the o-chem crap I can appreciate the science behind it, but I just don't have it in me to take it too far.

The one thing from all the lab work I have done is learn to have selective OCD - pay close attention to every little step and the clean everything until you can see through it - which is a good trait to have while brewing.

Another good thing is all those labs have a bounty of great equipment that can be used or modified for use in brewing. But stealing would be wrong, and I would never do it



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Old 07-21-2008, 05:34 PM   #3
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haha i hear you on that one....ive been drooling over all the stir plates that would most likely go unnoticed if one was missing....i dont think i could bring myself to do it, but man its tempting lol
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Old 07-21-2008, 05:35 PM   #4
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I have an amazing collection of flasks from my days working in the lab, never had to the balls to take one out of a teaching lab though.
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