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Carbon and its Compounds

Topics in the Chapter Carbon and its Compounds

The Covalent Bond
Versatile nature of Carbon
Chemical Properties of Carbon Compounds
Important Carbon Compounds
Soaps and Detergents


→ Compounds are of two types:
(i) Organic Compounds
(ii) Inorganic Compounds

→ Organic Compounds are made up of Carbons and form the basis of all living organisms.

The Covalent Bond

→ Carbon shares its valence electrons with other atoms of carbon or with atoms of other elements. Hydrogen, Oxygen, Nitrogen, Chlorine etc. also attain noble gas configuration by this method.

→ The bond formed by sharing of electron pair between two atoms are known as covalent atoms.

→ They have strong bonds within the molecule and small inter-molecular forces which gives rise to the low melting and boiling point. They are poor conductors of heat and electricity.

→ The various physical forms in which an element carbon exist due to differences in the arrangements of atoms are called allotropes of carbon. They have same chemical properties but different physical properties.

→ Carbon allotropes exist in three solid forms:
(i) Diamond: Carbon atom is bonded to four other carbon atoms forming a rigid three-dimensional
(ii) Graphite: Carbon atom is bonded to three other carbon atoms in the same plane giving a hexagonal array. Hexagonal arrays are placed in layers one above the other.
(iii) Buckminsterfullerence (C-60): Carbon atoms arranged in the shape of a football.

→ Carbon compounds contain single, double and triple covalent bonds.

→ Methane is simplest form of carbon.

Versatile nature of Carbon

→ The nature of forming covalent bonds due to the property of tetravalency and catenation helped the carbon in forming a large variety of compounds on the earth.

→ The unique property of carbon to form bonds with other atoms of carbon is called catenation.

→ The carbon-carbon bond forms very large chain and is very strong, hence stable.

→ Carbon has valency of four which can forms bond with four other atoms of carbon or atoms of some other mono-valent element.

→ Carbon forms very strong bonds due to its small size. Bonds formed by larger atoms are much weaker.

→ Small size of Carbon enables the nucleus to hold on to the shared pairs of electrons strongly.

Chemical Properties of Carbon Compounds

→ Compounds of carbon which are linked by only single bonds between the carbon atoms are called saturated hydrocarbons.

→ Compounds of carbon having double or triple bonds between their carbon atoms are called unsaturated hydrocarbons.

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