P248: Extraction and analysis of oils from corn and peanuts
In an organic chemistry laboratory experiment that is being developed, oil was extracted from peanuts and corn and was compared with store-bought peanut oil and corn oil. The purity is determined through analysis of the oils through use of gas chromatography-mass spectrometry. The corn oil was created by soaking the kernels in water and hexane for seven days. A steam distillation was used to evaporate the hexane and water, and then the product was centrifuged to separate it from the water. The peanut oil is created by blending peanuts that have been deshelled and skinned, and adding enough water to create a paste. The paste is then flushed with enough water to make a mixture and put into test tubes for seven days. The content of the tubes are strained and filtered and the remaining product is boiled until the only product left in the beaker does not boil. The analysis for purity is important for the purpose of showing how effectively home oils can be made.