Fischer Esterification

Fischer esterification is the esterification of a carboxylic acid by heating it with an alcohol in the presence of a strong acid as the catalyst.
eg:



The overall reaction is reversible; to drive the reaction to completion, it is necessary to exploit Le Châteliers principle, which can be done either by continuously removing the water formed from the system or by using a large excess of the alcohol.

Mechanism:



Print Friendly