Carbocations

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Jacob Afable 3J
Posts: 41
Joined: Fri Sep 25, 2015 3:00 am

Carbocations

Postby Jacob Afable 3J » Sat Feb 20, 2016 4:20 pm

Could someone help explain how to identify reaction intermediates as primary, secondary, or tertiary carbocations? From the reading, I picked up that maybe the number of CH3 molecules will determine this, but I'm not sure if that is the case. For reference, Self Test 4.2B on page 149 in orange Intro to Organic Chemistry book. Thanks!

Andrea Sandri 3D
Posts: 21
Joined: Fri Sep 25, 2015 3:00 am

Re: Carbocations

Postby Andrea Sandri 3D » Sat Feb 20, 2016 5:40 pm

Whether a carbon is primary, secondary, tertiary or quaternary is determined by the number of carbon atoms that are attached to it. The image at this link illustrates this convention: https://upload.wikimedia.org/wikipedia/commons/thumb/a/af/SubstitutionAtCarbon.svg/281px-SubstitutionAtCarbon.svg.png

You can note from the image that whether a carbon is primary, secondary, tertiary or quaternary is not determined by the number of CH3 groups attached to it. For example, the secondary carbon has only 1 CH3 group attached to it but it is still labelled as secondary.

fourmethylhexane
Posts: 9
Joined: Wed Nov 11, 2015 3:00 am

Re: Carbocations

Postby fourmethylhexane » Sat Feb 20, 2016 10:12 pm

For all organic molecules, first identify the longest carbon chain, for that would be your primary carbon skeleton along which you would label the primary, secondary, tertiary, and quaternary carbons.


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