Extraction of Caffeine from Tea Leaves

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  • Topic: Caffeine, Tea, Chemistry
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  • Published : September 10, 2011
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Extraction of Caffeine from Tea Leaves

Santos, Raphael, Samson, Nonia Carla, *Tabora, Brylle, Tan, Kate Michal Department of Biological Sciences, University of Santo Tomas, Manila, Philippines

Abstract
Tea leaves are natural products that are harvested from agriculture. Caffeine, on the other hand, is a stimulant that has been shown to speed up the time of reaction, increase alertness, and improve one’s concentration. What we did in this experiment was to extract the alkaloid caffeine content from the tealeaves. We had isolate and purify the leaves in the teabag so that we could acquire what is called a “pure caffeine.”

Introduction
Beverages such as tea and coffee consist of high amounts of caffeine. Caffeine is a stimulant that enhances one’s concentration and alert level. Caffeine is classified as an alkaloid, which is used for substances produced as end products of nitrogen metabolism in some plants. It is also among a large group of nitrogenous substances found in natural plants. Although the plant may be poisonous and may be bitter-tasting, many of its extracts are pharmacologically active and may cause a person to have changes in his psychology. Some examples of alkaloid are atropine, coniine, morphine, nicotine, quinine, and strychnine. In the experiment, we had to isolate, which is to separate a substance in pure form from a mixture; purify, which is to rid the tealeaves of impurities; and characterize, which is to describe the quality of the caffeine in the tealeaves.

Results and Discussion
Figure 1.1 Solid-liquid extraction

Figure 1.2 Liquid-liquid extraction
You would see in this figure a CH2Cl2 layer and water layer has formed. The CH2Cl2 that is in the lower layer was drained into a clean flask. This was repeated twice until all the CH2Cl2 was combined. Thereafter, it was put into a separatory funnel where it was washed with 20 ml 6M NaOH solution. The latter was discarded after.| Figure 2. Purification

The crude caffeine...
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