Volume 50, Issue 1 (January 2005)

    Structural Determination of the Principal Byproduct of the Lithium-Ammonia Reduction Method of Methamphetamine Manufacture

    (Received 18 May 2004; accepted 21 August 2004)

    Published Online: January

    CODEN: JFSOAD

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    Abstract

    One common method- of illicit methamphetamine manufacture utilizes an alkali metal, typically lithium, and liquid ammonia to chemically reduce ephedrine or pseudoephedrine to form methamphetamine. This method is often referred to as the lithium-ammonia reduction method or the Birch reduction method. While the hydroxyl group of ephedrine is more reactive than the aromatic ring, excess alkali metal and the presence of a proton source allow the formation of a cyclohexadiene byproduct not found in samples of methamphetamine produced from other manufacturing methods. A sample enriched in this byproduct was generated and characterized using nuclear magnetic resonance (NMR) spectroscopy, gas chromatography-mass spectrometry (GC-MS), infrared (IR) spectrophotometry, and ultraviolet (UV) spectrophotometry. The chemical structure of this byproduct was determined to be 1-(1ʹ,4ʹ-cyclohexadienyl)-2-methylaminopropane (CMP).


    Author Information:

    Person, EC
    Washington State Patrol, Marysville Crime Laboratory, Marysville, Washington

    Meyer, JA
    Western Washington University, Bellingham, Washington

    Vyvyan, JR
    Western Washington University, Bellingham, Washington


    Stock #: JFS2004204

    ISSN: 0022-1198

    DOI: 10.1520/JFS2004204

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    Title Structural Determination of the Principal Byproduct of the Lithium-Ammonia Reduction Method of Methamphetamine Manufacture
    Symposium , 0000-00-00
    Committee E30