Distinguish between esterification and saponification reactions with the help of the chemical equations for each. State one use of each (i) esters, and (ii) saponification process.


The difference between esterification and saponification reactions is given below:

Esterification
Saponification
 Carboxylic acid reacts with alcohols in the presence of a little conc. sulphuric acid to form esters.
On treating an ester with a base such as NaOH, it is converted back to alcohol and sodium salt of carboxylic acid.

Example: Ethanoic acid reacts with ethanol in the presence of a little conc. sulphuric acid to form esters.


Example: Ethyl ethanoate on reaction with sodium hydroxide gives ethanol and sodium ethanoate.


(i)  Use of esters: Esters are used in synthetic flavours, perfumes, cosmetics, lacquers, paints and varnishes.

(ii)  Use of saponification process: It is used in the preparation of soaps on a commercial basis.


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Updated on: 10-Oct-2022

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