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Thread: Organic Chemistry, doubt !! :-D

  1. #1 Organic Chemistry, doubt !! :-D 
    Forum Senior Yash's Avatar
    Join Date
    Mar 2008
    Can anyone explain me that in Organic Chemistry how do you come to know that the arrangement of molecules is Tertiary arrangement, Secondary arrangement, Primary arrangement.
    Thank You !!
    :-D :-D

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  3. #2  
    Forum Bachelors Degree
    Join Date
    May 2007
    NC USA
    It is simply a matter of definition and you ought to be looking it up yourself.

    If you still don't understand, give an example of compounds of interest that led to this question.


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  4. #3  
    Forum Freshman
    Join Date
    May 2008
    There are two types of situations where the primary/secondary/tertiary distinctions are used.

    The first (and more common) one is used when you have a functional group that has a single bond to carbon such as -OH, Br, and the like. Here, primary refers to the number of carbons attached to the carbon that bears the functional group.

    For example:

    CH3-CH2-OH is a primary alcohol. The carbon atom that is attached to the -OH is attached to one other carbon atom.

    (CH3)2-CH-OH is a secondary alcohol. The carbon atom with the OH is attached to two other carbon atoms.

    (CH3)3-C-OH is a tertiary alcohol because there are now three carbon atoms attached to the carbon atom that bears the OH.

    The second situation is when you have an amine or amide. Primary means that you have one carbon atom attached to the nitrogen atom in either case. In the case of an amide, you count the carbon atom that is part of the C=O. Secondary means two carbon atoms, and tertiary means three.
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