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This problem asks me to draw a Lewis structure of benzyne (C6H4) including the hybridization of each carbon atom, then use my knowledge of bonding to explain why benzyne might be a reactive molecule. I know that the triple bond within the molecule would play a significant role, I'm just not exactly sure as to how/why. Could someone please elaborate on this for me?
The carbons that are triple bonded to each other are sp hybridized. While their hybridization would normally like to adopt a linear arrangement with 180 degree angles, the angles are closer to 120 because they're in the ring. Because of this, benzyne has a very strained structure and is highly reactive.
As mentioned in the comment above, the reason this molecule is highly reactive because the triple bond between the 2 carbons not attached to hydrogens are being forced into a shape that their sp hybridization would not normally produce. Because they are in a ring with all the other carbons, which are sp2 hybridized, the triple bond between the two carbons has bond angles closer to 120, even though under normal circumstances their bond angles would be 180.
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