Though the Fischer-Tropsch reaction is not a new topic in the world of science, the mechanism for the reaction is still unknown. After acquiring several different products from the Fischer-Tropsch reaction, it is possible to run analysis of these products against known branched carbon chains to identify the mechanism of the reaction. In order to synthesize these specific branched carbon chains, the Grignard, elimination, and hydrogenation reactions were used. This process takes reactants from a ketone to a branched alkane carbon chain. After trial and error in developing a procedure and adjusting the variables in each reaction, the series was able to consistently produce successful results and yields of the carbon chains. For the eight, ten, and eleven carbon chains we were able to synthesize 2 and 3 methyl branched compounds. The next step to correctly define the mechanism for the Fischer-Tropsch reaction is to run analysis of the products acquired from the Fischer-Tropsch reaction against the synthesized branched carbon chains.

Semester/Year of Award

Spring 5-5-2012


Buchang Shi

Department/Professional Affiliation


Access Options

Restricted Access Thesis

Degree Name

Honors Scholars