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Chapter 1.

1 Formulae, equations and amounts of substances

Whats in an atom?
The nuclei of atoms has protons (+) and neutrons (0) [called nucleons]
Electrons (-) occupy empty space outside the nucleus
Element: substance that cannot be broken down chemically into simpler
Atomic number: number of protons of an atom of the element
Number of protons is equal to the number of electrons, so the atom is electrically
Protons and neutrons have mass but electrons mass is negligible
Mass number: number of protons + number of neutrons
Atoms with the same atomic number but a different numbers of neutrons are
called isotopes
Some heavy isotopes are radioactive
They may have different physical properties but the same chemical properties as
the number of electrons is the same
Holding atoms together:
Bonding between metals and non-metals is ionic
An atom loses or gains an electron to have a complete outer shell, this makes the
atom, an ion
Strong electrostatic forces hold the oppositely charged ions in a giant lattice
Covalent bonding: non-metals bond together by sharing pairs of electrons
Ions in solutions:
Ions that are not involved in an equation are called spectator ions
Molecular equation shows complete formula of every substance
Relative atomic mass:
The average mass of its isotopes compared with the mass of an atom of the
carbon-12 isotope
It is an average of the differing isotopes
Counting and Weighing atoms:
Mole: the amount of substance that contains as many particles (atoms, ions or
molecules) as there are atoms in exactly 12g of carbon 12
Any mole of a substance contains 6.23x10^23 particles (Avogadros number)
Avogadros constant has the unit particles per mole (mol
) and sometimes has
the symbol L or NA
Relative formula mass and relative molecular mass:
The sum of the relative atomic masses of all the atoms within a chemical formula
Molar mass: the RMM or RFM in grams per mole; it tells you the number of grams
of a substance that makes up one mole
Molar Volume:
Molar volume (of the gas) [Vm]: one mole of any substance must occupy the same
volume under the same conditions
STP: standard temperature and pressure [1 atmospheric pressure and 298K] is
used to compare molar volumes
Under STP: 1 mole of any gas occupies 24dm

The empirical formula:
Gives the ratio of the different atoms present; it is the simplest formula for a
compound showing the whole number ratio of each atom of an element present
Does not say how many atoms are bound together in one molecule of a compound
Moles in solution:
Solution: solute that has dissolved in a solvent
Molar solution: solution of concentration 1M
Concentration [molarity] is measured in mol dm-3
Other units of concentration
Percentage by mass:
Percentage by mass = mass of solute/mass of solution x 100
Percentage by volume:
Percentage by volume = volume of one component/total volume x 100
Parts per million:
Concentration= mass of component/mass of solution x 1 000 000 ppm
Used for levels of pollution in air or water; used when percentages are not very
The yield of a reaction:
Yields may not be 100% as: reactants may not continue until all reactants are
used up (may be an equilibrium reaction); some product may be left on
apparatus; volatile products may evaporate; human error
Double salts:
Crystals that contain two different salts in a 1:1 ratio
Atom economy:
Atom economy: mass of atoms in desired product/mass of atoms in reactants x

Chapter Two: Energetics and Enthalpy Change
Energy and Energetics:
Energetics: study of energy transfers between chemicals and their surroundings
Thermochemistry: study of these energy transfers
Exothermic and Endothermic:
Endothermic reaction: reaction that needs energy from heating to take place
Exothermic reaction: reaction that releases energy
Bond breaking requires energy whilst bond making releases energy
Energy changes in exothermic reaction:
Energy released by bond formation is greater than the energy needed to break
the bonds in the reactant
Neutralisation reactions are exothermic
Energy changes in endothermic reactions:
The energy required to break the bond is greater than the energy released when
new bonds are formed in the product
Photosynthesis and thermal decomposition is endothermic
Enthalpy changes:
An exothermic reaction releases energy to the surrounding in the form of heat
(enthalpy change of reaction)
System: the reaction in which the changes are happening
Surrounding: everything outside the system
Boundary: separates system from the surroundings
Closed boundary: prevents particles leaving or entering the surroundings
Isolated boundary: prevents energy from leaving or entering the surroundings
Energy cannot be created or destroyed
Energy is transferred and spread through the surroundings (dissipated)
Principle of conservation of energy: total energy content of the universe is
How much energy is transferred?
Enthalpy (H): energy content in a system held at a constant pressure
Enthalpy change (H): the amount of heat given off or absorbed in a reaction
carried out at constant pressure
H = Hproducts Hreactants
Enthalpy level diagrams:
In an exothermic reaction the enthalpy change is negative as
Energy needed to break the bonds in the reactant is less than the energy needed
to form the bonds in the product
The energy that the system loses is given out as heat and the surroundings warm
up (there is a net decrease in the potential energy of the system)

In an endothermic reaction, H is positive
Energy content of system has increased as it has gained energy from the
Energy needed to break the bonds in the reactants is more than the energy
needed to form the bonds in the reactants
Energy is transferred from the surroundings and there is a net increase in
potential energy of the system

The temperature of the
surroundings is lower than the
temperature of the products so
energy is transferred to the
surroundings as products cool
The temperature of the
surroundings is higher than the
temperature of the products, so
energy is transferred to the
Heat capacities and Calorimeters:
The heat capacity (C): of a body of liquid or air is the amount of energy required
to raise its temperature by 1K
The specific heat capacity: amount of energy in joules required to raise the
temperature of 1kg of a substance by 1K
Energy transferred (J) = mass (kg) x specific heat capacity (J kg-1 K-1) x
temperature change (K)
The bomb calorimeter:
A calorimeter used to determine the energy change during a reaction accurately
Useful for studying the enthalpy changes when fuel burns and to find calorific
Heat is transferred to the surroundings: makes it slightly inaccurate and
unreliable (however heat loss can be calculated and corrections can be calculated
and compensated)
You can use an electrical heater to create the exact same temperature change in
the calorimeter
So electrical needed to bring about same temperature change can be calculated
Tells you more accurately the energy change that occurred the reaction as
measured energy change duplicates any heat losses form the calorimeter
Important standard enthalpy changes:
Standard enthalpy changes refer to reactions done under standard conditions and
everything in their standard states
Standard enthalpy of combustion (H

When one mole of a substance is burnt completely in oxygen under standard
Complete combustion of carbon only forms carbon dioxide and NOT carbon
monoxide so the enthalpy of combustion is the first process
C(s) + O2(g) CO(g) but C(s) + O2(g) CO2(g)
The standard enthalpy changes of combustion varies due to the number of bonds
that need to be made and broken and the types of bonds involved
One mole of hexane will release more energy than one mole of methane as it has
more as there is more bond breaking and more bonding forming hexane
Energy released from combustion is due to bond making with the oxygen so the
more oxygen a fuel has in its molecule, the less energy it will give out
Bonds between different elements have different bond energies so chemical
make-up of the fuel and the bonds will affect the enthalpy of combustion
Standard enthalpy of formation (H

The enthalpy change when one mole of the compound is formed form its
elements under standard conditions
The units for enthalpy of formation is kJ mol

Enthalpy of formation for en element is 0
Standard enthalpy change of atomisation (H

Enthalpy change when one mole of its atoms in the gaseous state is formed from
the element under standard conditions
Endothermic as it involved increasing the separation between atoms (requires
May be measured by spectroscopic means in cases of gases
Standard enthalpy of neutralisation (H

Enthalpy change when one mole of acid is neutralised by an alkali in their
standard states at 25 degrees and in solutions containing 1 mol dm-3
Enthalpy of dilute acids with strong bases and strong alkali will always be close ot
-58kJ mol-1 as they are fully ionised
Hesss law:
Total enthalpy change for a reaction is independent of the route taken
Bond enthalpies and mean bond enthalpies:
Bond dissociation enthalpy: the energy needed to break a particular covalent
bond or the energy released when the bond is formed
Same type of bonds in different compounds can have slightly different bond
enthalpies depending on the combinations of other atoms in the molecule and
their effect on the bonds
Mean bond enthalpy:
The mean value of the bond dissociation enthalpy of a particular type of bond
over a wide range of different compounds
Apply to gaseous states so can lead to inaccuracy using a different state
They allow you to compare the strengths of bonds in different atoms
Allow you to estimate the enthalpy changes in reactions
Help in building up an understanding of the structure and bonding of compounds
Develop an understanding of the mechanisms of chemical reactions
They can be used to predict which bond will break first and how easy it is to
break the bond
Bonds with high bond enthalpy will need more energy so it is likely it will not
break first (and vice versa)
Bonds with very low bond enthalpies could even take place at room temperature
The lower down the energy diagram something is, the more energetically stable it
Bond breaking takes energy and there is a minimum amount of energy needed
before a reaction can start: this is called the activation energy
The mixture can be kinetically stable even though it may be energetically
(thermodynamically) unstable


RAM: of an element is the average mass of the isotopes compared with the mass of an
atom of Carbon- 12
Atomic mass unit: mass of a carbon 12 divided by 12
Relative formula mass: sum of RAM of all the atoms in the chemical formula (referred
to as RMM in molecular compounds)

To find the RAM, you need to measure its mass and compare it to the mass of a carbon
12 atom
1. VAPOURISATION: Sample must be in a gaseous state to move through the machine. It
is vaporised and then injected
2. IONISATION: Bombarded with a beam of high energy electrons which collide with the
atoms of the sample. Knocks of electrons to form positively charged ions. Allows them
to be accelerated in an electric field
3. ACCELERATION: Accelerated using an electric field
4. DEFLECTION: Passes through velocity selector (all will be the same velocity). Any
difference in effect of magnetic field would be due to charge/mass not speed.
Enter a uniform magnetic field which deflects. Heavier and small positive charged
ions are deflected less than small, more positively charged ions.
Strength of magnetic field is steadily increased. At particular settings, only ions of one
particular mass:charge ratio will pass through other ions will be deflected too little
or too much to go through
5. DETECTOR: Measures how many ions pass through at each different magnetic field
and velocity selector setting. Shows how many ions of each mass:charge ratio there
Results are obtained in mass spectrum. Relative heights of peaks show relative
abundance of different ions present
The peaks on the mass spectrum of an element show the different isotopes of the

Only a limited number of energy changes or transitions can take place within the atom
Electrons are arranged in shells (name of shell = principal quantum number [n]) tells
us about the size of the shell. Larger the shell = further away from nucleus
Ionisation: complete removal of an electron from an atom thermic as work has to be
done to overcome attractive between it and the nucleus)
Ionisation energy: amount of energy needed to remove an electron from an atom
Can be measured by gradually increasing voltage applied to a gas until it conducts
electricity and emits light (tells electron has been freed)
Ground state: an atom that is at its lowest energy level
First ionisation energy: the amount of energy required to move the first electron in
the outermost shell. The less tightly it is bounded, the lower the IE will be (thus more
Each shell may contain a number of subshells (s,p,d,f,g)

Shell Subshell
1 1s
2 2s, 2p
3 3s, 3p, 3d
4 4s, 4p, 4d, 4f
Shell 1 is the closest to the nucleus so will need the most energy to remove electron.
Subshells have different energies (electrons with lowest energy will be closest to
nucleus) : s (lowest energy) < p < d
Subshells contain orbitals: the regions where the electrons are most likely to be found
As the number of shells increase, the energy gap between successive shells gets
smaller. Thus orbitals in neighbouring shells may overlap: e.g. 3d has an energy level
above that of 4s but lower than 4p
Atom is in ground state when electrons are in the orbitals with the lowest possible
energy levels
Electron spin: a moving charge creates a magnetic field (electron can spin either
clockwise or anticlockwise). Two electrons in the same orbital cannot have the same
spin (thus orbital can only have 2 electrons with opposite spin)
Hunds rule: when electrons are placed within a set of orbitals with equal energy, they
spread out to maximise the number of unpaired electrons. Electrons will fill the
lowest energy orbitals first, then the remaining orbitals in order of increasing energy
Nodes: Areas where the electron wave has zero amplitude thus the electron density is
zero (electrons will not be present)
S orbitals are spherical; P orbitals are dumbbell shaped and lie at ninety degrees to
each other. Size of orbitals increase with principal quantum number

Hydrogen does not fit naturally into any group so is isolated at the top
All elements in a period have the same number of electron shells
The s-block elements:
Outermost electron is in the s subshell
Lose electrons easily to form positive ions. Includes reactive metals which can form
stable ionic compounds with non metals
Lower boiling and melting point and lower density than most other metals
Conduct electricity due to metallic bonding resulting in sea of delocalised electrons
Helium and Hydrogen are also s block. But the characteristics of them are so different
to the other s-block elements that they are put in a separate group
The d-block elements:
Contains elements with successive electrons being added to the d- subshell
Transition metals (but zinc does not fit this description/ and mercury)
Much less reactive as outer subshell s is full whilst d subshell is being filled
Can conduct heat and electricity; shiny, hard and malleable #
The f-block elements:
Successive electrons are being added into the f subshell
Top row (lanthanides)= very similar metals; bottom row (actinides) = radioactive
[actinides up to uranium are naturally occurring; others are artificial and are very
unstable short half-lives)
The p-block elements:
Groups 3,4,5,6,7 and 8. Electrons are being added to p subshell in outer shell
Metals: (e.g. tine and lead) form positive ions and ionic compounds with non-metals.
Can conduct heat and electricity, but do not have strong metallic characteristics. Post
transition metals are relatively unreactive
Metalloids: diagonal block; act like non-metals but can conduct electricity (albeit
Non-metals: covalent with non-metals and ionic with metals. Majority do not conduct
electricity but some do. Some form giant covalent structures and many exist as small

Periodicity: repeating trends of properties of elements in the periodic table
Trends in the periodic table
Atomic radius increases going down a group due to extra electron shells being added,
despite it having extra protons, the electrons are further away and are increasingly
screened from the nucleus (shielding increases thus nuclear charge decreases)
Across the period, atomic radius generally decreases: nuclear charge becomes
increasingly positive as number of protons increase; the number of electrons also
increase but they are all in the same shell so they are more strongly attracted to the
Positive ions have a smaller radius as loss of electron(s) means that remaining
electrons will have a greater share of positive charge from nucleus thus are more
tightly bounded. In addition, when a ion is formed, the whole shell is lost
Negatively charged ions: even though additional electrons are within the same shell,
there is extra negative charge thus electrons will be less tightly bounded to the
nucleus so the radius will be larger
Periodic trends in ionisation energy:
The more tightly held the outer electrons; the higher the first ionisation energy
The further the outermost electron is away from the nucleus (atomic radius), the
smaller the attraction it will have thus the ionisation energy decreases
A more positive charge nucleus will have a greater attraction to the outermost
electron which results in a high ionisation energy
Inner shells of electrons repel the outermost electron shielding it away from the
nucleus, the further (and more electron shell) the outermost electron is from the
nucleus, the less attraction it will have to the electron so a lower ionisation energy
Ionisation increases as you go across a period due to increasing positive nuclear
charge but no addition of electron shells to screen the outer shells
Atomic radius decreases as electrons are held together more tightly so ionisation
energy will be high
Ionisation energy trends of groups:
Group 8: have high ionisation energy due to stable electronic structure (has a full
outer shell) which makes them very unreactive
Group 3: The increased distance results in a reduced attraction and so a reduced
ionisation energy; The 2p orbital is screened not only by the 1s2 electrons but, to
some extent, by the 2s2 electrons as well. That also reduces the pull from the nucleus
and so lowers the ionisation energy
Group 6: There are paired electrons in the subshell as opposed to a half full subshell;
the repulsion between the two electrons in the same orbital means that the electron is
easier to remove than it would otherwise be
Patterns in physical properties:
The melting temperature: is the temperature where the pure solid is at equilibrium
with the pure liquid at atmospheric pressure
High melting point of metals are due to their metallic structure, atoms are held
together tightly by a sea of negative electrons
Giant molecular structure (such as carbon and silicon) had high melting points as they
are held in by covalent bonds in a crystal structure; it is very difficult to remove
individual atoms
Non metals found on the right often have simple molecular structure so are found as
simple, individual molecules. The atoms are joined by strong covalent bonds but the
molecules themselves are bonded by weak intermolecular forces: so they can be
separated easily resulting in a low melting temperature
Chapter Four: Bonding

What is a chemical bond?
The forces holding an atom together
Ionic bonding:
Bonding between metals and non-metals
Forms oppositely charged ions which are held together by strong electrostatic forces
of attraction
Ions are held together in a giant ionic lattice which can then form ionic crystals
Can be thought of as the net electrostatic attraction between the ions
Lattice structure of ionic compound is the arrangement of ions in a way that
maximises the attractive forces of the oppositely charged ions and minimises the
repulsion between the similarly charged ions
The forces that are exerted by the ions act equally in all directions and so hold the
ions tightly
Isoelectronic: when an ion gains or loses electron(s) to have the same electronic
configuration of a noble gas (e.g. Na+ and Ne are isoelectronic)
Transfer of electrons forms the ionic (electrovalent) bond#
Octet rule: when elements react; they tend to do so in a way that results in an outer
shell containing eight electrons
Giant ionic lattices:
High melting point
Can dissolve in water
Can conduct electricity when molten or in aqueous solution
Trends in ionic radii:
Is the radius of an ion in a crystal
Radius of positive ion is smaller than atom of the element as remaining electrons are
more strongly attracted to the positive nucleus; negative ions are larger as the extra
electrons mean they are less bounded to the nucleus
Types of lattice structure:
Electro n density map: show the exact arrangement of ions in an ionic lattice which
varies depending on the relative sizes of the different ions presen
The coordination number: number of nearest neighbouring ions
Face centred cubic structure and body centred cubic structure
Lattice energy:
The enthalpy of formation of one mole of an ionic compound from gaseous ions under
standard conditions
This is a bond forming process so the enthalpy change is negative as it is exothermic
What affects lattice energies?
The lattice energy becomes less negative as the size of the ions increase. In smaller
ions, the attractive force of the positive nucleus holds the outer electrons more tightly
because they are closer to the nucleus
Lattice energy becomes more negative with ions of greater charge as they are
attracted to other ions more strongly
Increasing the charge on either ion increases the attractive force between two
oppositely charged ions in the lattice
Decreasing the size of one or both ions decreases the distance between them and so
increases the attractive force
Polarisation in ionic bonds:
Attraction of the positive cation for the outer electons of the negative cations. Electron
cloud of anion is attracted to the positive cation
If distortion is great, it will lead to a charge cloud which is similar to a covalent bond
Polarising power depends on charge density (so ionic charge and radius)
Cations with small ionic are much more polarising as they have a higher charge
density (effect of positive nucleus is felt more strongly)
Cations with large positive charge are more polarising than cations with a smaller
charge as they have a stronger attraction for the outer shell
The larger the anion, the more easily it is polarised
Theoretical models always assume that the ions are spherical and separate and
electron charge is evenly distributed across the ion
Polarisation of bond, distortion in the shape of the ion and increasing covalent
character in bonds reduce the lattice energy
Covalent Bonds:
A shared pair of electrons; electron density exerts and attractive force on each
Between two non metals
Sharing two pairs of electrons results in a double bonds; three pairs is a triple bond
Dative Covalent bonds:
Sometimes the pair of electrons that make up the covalent bonds come from the same
Compounds that have unshared electron pairs readily to form dative covalent bonds
Dative covalent bonds are the same length and strength as any other covalent bonds
Metallic Bonding:
Good conductors of heat and electricity
Metal crystal: positive metal ions surrounded by a sea of delocalised electrons, there
is a strong attraction between positive metal ions and electrons

Chapter Five: Introductory organic chemistry:

Hazards and Risks:
- Hazard presented by a substance or an activity is its potential to do harm
(potential is absolute)
- Some chemicals are flammable and some are toxic
- Tendency to burn or to poison are texted and calculated and will always be
the same
- Risk associated with a particular hazard is the chance that it will actually to
cause harm
- Affected by nature of hazard involved and the level of exposure to it
- Level of exposure is dependent on the expertise of the person working with
the chemical, volume being used, the conditions its used in and the protective
clothing and equipment available
Ways of reducing risk:
- Working with smaller amounts: when quantities are smaller, it is easier to
contain the reaction in closed apparatus
- If heat is given out, the smaller the quantity, the less heat given out
- Smaller quantities are also easier to transfer from one equipment to another
(e.g. less chance of spillage)
- Taking specific precautions or using alternative techniques depending on the
properties of the hazardous substances you are using
- E.g. using a low concentration as possible (at low concentrations, the
chemicals are more likely to be irritant than corrosive so hazard is lowered)
- If hazard risk is high, the risk can be kept low by careful planning and risk
- Careful useful of safety measures: fume cupboards to remove toxic or
flammable fumes; personal protection such as safety googles
- Changing the conditions in which a reaction takes place: e.g. lowering
temperature slows down the rate of reaction, this would reduce risks of
reaction mixture overheating and producing fumes; although the cooling may
change equilibrium position and will affect proportion of reactants and
products in the final mixture
- Using alternative methods with less hazardous substances: possible to
substitute chemicals and still study the same basic reaction, but they may not
be as effective as original one but originals are far more hazardous. For
example, cyclohexane can be used instead of tetrachloromethane, however
plastic screw tops or bungs will be affected if it is stored for over a month
Why does carbon form four covalent bonds?
Arrangement of the four bonds around the carbon atom is nearly
Electronic configuration indicates that it needs four electrons to reach a
noble gas configuration
Once bonds are made, the outer electrons form a fully shared octet (inner
shell complete, no lone pairs or empty orbitals so it does not need to
with any other atom)
Can form strong covalent bonds with itself and other elements such as
Organic families:
Aliphatic molecules: straight or branched chain carbon skeleton
Alicyclic molecules: closed rings of carbon atoms which may contain C=C
Arene: derived from benzene molecules and contain a benzene ring with
six carbons in structure
Functional group: atom or group of atoms which is typical for a particular
organic family and which determines the same chemical properties of the
Functional group is affected by the environment (e.g. as hydrocarbon gets
bigger, it has increasing effect on the chemistry of the molecule and
influence of functional group decreases)
The different functional groups:
General formula: describes the number of carbons and its relationships to
other atoms
Functional group, shape and size of carbon chain affects how it reacts
The shapes of molecules:
Isomers: when two or more compounds have the same molecular
formula but the atoms are connected together differently
Structural isomerism: remain part of the same homologous series
although boiling points may vary
Brought about by the different shapes of molecules which affect the
intermolecular forces between the molecules due to the way in which the
molecules can pack
Stereoisomerism: when 3D arrangements of the bonds in a molecule
allow different possible orientations in space

The Alkanes:
Hydrocarbons: group of organic compounds containing several homologous series
(aliphatic; alicyclic and arenes)
All insoluble in water and burn completely in oxygen to product CO2 and H20
General properties:
Are saturated: so have no double or triple bonds between carbon atoms so contain the max
possible number of hydrogen atoms
Can occur as both and straight chained carbons
Where are they obtained from?
Found in fossil fuels alongside with other product of decomposition (methane)
Plants and animals died and sank to the bottom, deep layers of decomposing material
formed which became encapsulated in rock
Over time it was exposed to extreme heat and pressure to form crude oil/petroleum
Using crude oil:
Crude oil is extracted from the ground.
Primary distillation is the basic process by which petroleum is turned to a valuable liquid into
useful chemicals with whole variety of properties
Liquid collected over each range of temperature is called a fraction
1. 1-2% refinery gas: lightest fraction of crude oil with the lowest boiling point ; contains
gaseous alkanes; used as a fuel
2. 15-30% gasoline: mixture of straight chained or branched liquid hydrocarbons; used for
engine combustion
3. 10-15% kerosene: mainly C11 or C12 used for aircraft fuel, can be cracked down to more
useful hydrocarbons
4. 15-20% diesel oil; gas oil: used in industrial boilers, can be cracked down using catalytic
5. 405-% residue: complex mixtures of hydrocarbons; very viscous and high boiling point; can
be used as fuel for power stations or cracked further to produce lubricating oils
Different fractions in demand:
There is a higher demand for short chain hydrocarbons than long chain hydrocarbons
Heating long chain alkanes can cause the molecule to split into a shorter chain molecule
Alkanes are very unreactive, so cracking them to make alkenes (reactive) is very efficient
Using high temperatures to break it down is very expensive so often a catalyst is used
(catalytic cracking)
They are non corrosive with metals (good lubricating oils) harmless to skin
At room temperature, they are not affected by concentrated mineral acids or alkali
They are no affected by oxidising agents or the most reactive metals
As C-C and C-H bonds evenly share electrons since electronegative of carbon and hydrogen
are very close so the bonds are not polar to any extent so there are no charges to attract
other polar or ionic species
Formation of alkanes are due to free radicals which have unpaired electrons; this means
they have very high activation energy but once this is overcome, they proceed to react very
rapidly in the gas phase
Breaking bonds:
Breaking bond is called bond fission
When the bonds are broken, there are two ways in which the paired electrons shared
between the two atoms can go
Homolytic fission:
Equal sharing out of the electrons in the bonds, so each of the participants in the bond
receives one electron when the bond splits
Despite neither atoms having overall charge, the free radicals with their unpaired are
extremely unreactive as the unpaired electron has a strong tendency to pair up with
another electron from another substance
Mainly occurs when there is little or no ionic character in the covalent bond
Heterolytic fission:
Involves an unequal sharing of the electrons in the covalent bond so that both electrons go
to one electron
Results in two charged particles, the atoms which gain the electrons become negatively
charged and the atoms which loses the electrons become positively charged
This happens when theres a degree of polarity in the covalent bond
Heating Alkanes:
When alkanes are heated in high temperatures in the absence of oxygen, they split into
smaller molecules (C-C bonds are broken and form C=C bonds it is a thermal
decomposition reaction)
Cracking of methane produces powdered carbon which is used in car tyres etc
Will combust to produce water and carbon dioxide, they are very energetically unstable
Will only burn in their gaseous state so liquids are less flammable (must be vapourised)
An exothermic reaction: energy needed to break the bonds in the chemical reaction of
combustion is less than the energy returned when the new bonds are formed in the
products of combustion
Methane, propane and butane are all commonly used fuels, many areas, natural gas is piped
into homes
Propane canisters can be supplied; great advantage is that it can be readily liquefied under
pressure and at low temperatures so that a large quantity of gas can be stored in a small
It will not burn until it is a gas so it can be stored and transported relatively easily and safely