Posted by Namie on .
In sugar production, a process involves seeding of a supersaturated solution (sugar as solute) by adding 'ground sugar with few amounts of isopropyl alcohol'. My question is, why must the ground sugar be wetted with isopropyl alcohol?
thanks in advance.
chemistry -- help -
I am not exactly sure what 'with few amounts..' means.
The sugar drops out of solution quite rapidly from the supersaturated solution. I suspect that if you add a small amount of solid sugar to to a large container of supersaturated solution then you end up with a claggy mass that is hard to handle (e.g. filter) and will entrain a lot of the liquid.
By stiring in a dispersion of finely divided sugar in isopropyl then there is a more uniform crystallisation, and the result are homogeneous small crystals.
Why IPA? I am not an expert on food processing, but there are only a small number of solvents that are permitted to be used with food products.