From: Harry Elston <harry**At_Symbol_Here**MIDWESTCHEMSAFETY.COM>
Subject: Re: [DCHAS-L] Safer Diels-Alder reaction
Date: Fri, 19 Jul 2019 11:15:22 -0500
Reply-To: harry**At_Symbol_Here**MIDWESTCHEMSAFETY.COM
Message-ID: 004d01d53e4d$2ef41650$8cdc42f0$**At_Symbol_Here**



All chemicals can be handled safely and the Diels-Alder reaction has been around for about 90+ years, so those with a strong organic chemistry background should have the experience in reaction control.  What better place to teach chemical safety and how to handle exothermic reactions than in a highly-supervised classroom with limited quantities and good containment?


Chemistry is not a “zero-risk” occupation and we, as educators, should not imply that it is.  It is a risk-managed occupation.  A well-equipped academic laboratory is ideally suited for risk management.  I would encourage you not to miss a great opportunity to teach safety to the next generation. 






From: ACS Division of Chemical Health and Safety <DCHAS-L**At_Symbol_Here**PRINCETON.EDU> On Behalf Of Denlinger, Kendra
Sent: Friday, July 19, 2019 9:41 AM
Subject: [DCHAS-L] Safer Diels-Alder reaction


Hello everyone,

I'm teaching an organic lab right now (my first time teaching this course), and we're supposed to do a Diels-Alder reaction in a few weeks. It's a reaction between cyclopentadiene and maleic anhydride, and the students are supposed to "crack" dicyclopentadiene to cyclopentadiene using a distillation with mineral oil, and then react cyclopentadiene with maleic anhydride in ethyl acetate (which is a very exothermic reaction). Long story short, the whole thing sounds like an accident waiting to happen. 


I know there has got to be a safer (and maybe even greener!) Diels-Alder reaction out there for organic lab students, but I don't know exactly where to look and thought maybe it would be a good question for all of you! I don't have a long time to search and test things, so if someone has a Diels-Alder procedure you use at your university that works and is safer, I would love to hear about it!


Thanks for any assistance!

Kendra Denlinger


Kendra Leahy Denlinger, Ph.D.

Adjunct Faculty

Department of Chemistry

Xavier University

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