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Alcohols are organic compounds which contain a hydroxyl functional group (-OH) bounded to a saturated carbon atom.
Types of Alcohols Edit
Alcohols are divide according to type of carbon atom to which the hydroxyl functional group is bonded:
- Primary alcohols
- Secondary alcohols
- Tertiary alcohols
- Tertiary alcohols are ones in which the carbon atom that is bonded to a hydroxyl functional group is bounded to three other carbon atom.
- Tertiary alcohols can not be oxidized.
Systematic names Edit
Common names Edit
|Chemical Formula||IUPAC Name||Common Name|
|C3H7OH||Isopropyl alcohol||Rubbing alcohol|
|Unsaturated aliphatic alcohols|
|C10H19OH||2 - (2-propyl)-5-methyl-cyclohexane-1-ol||Menthol|
Physical and chemical properties Edit
Primary alcohols can be oxidized either to aldehydes or to carboxylic acids, while the oxidation of secondary alcohols normally terminates at the ketone stage. Tertiary alcohols are resistant to oxidation.
The direct oxidation of primary alcohols to carboxylic acids normally proceeds via the corresponding aldehyde, which is transformed via an aldehyde hydrate by reaction with water before it can be further oxidized to the carboxylic acid.
Reagents useful for the transformation of primary alcohols to aldehydes are normally also suitable for the oxidation of secondary alcohols to ketones. These include Collins reagent and Dess-Martin periodinane. The direct oxidation of primary alcohols to carboxylic acids can be carried out using potassium permanganate or the Jones reagent.
Dehydration is a process of separating all the water molecules from the alcohol. This is done with a dehydrating agent which is more hygroscopic than the alcohol, one such example are the alkali metals or dehydrated calcium chloride.