Alcohol Hydroxyl group

Organic chemistry has always been a vast subject of research among the science enthusiasts. The idea of basic organic chemistry is to propagate the elementary information about the organic compounds that exist around us and provide a solid foundation for the further exploration of organic compounds and the factors that govern the properties of these compounds. The organic compounds from a series, known as homologs series in which the successive compounds contain the same functional groups and differ from one another by a –CH2 group. Alcohol is one of the many functional groups found in organic compounds.In this article, we will learn about alcohol structure, phenol structure, and other structure.

What is Alcohol?

Alcohols are the organic compounds in which a hydrogen atom or an aliphatic carbon is replaced with the hydroxyl group. Thus an alcohol molecule consists of two parts; one containing the alkyl group and the other containing hydroxyl group. They have a sweet odor. They exhibit a unique set of physical and chemical properties. These physical and chemical properties of alcohols are mainly due to the presence of hydroxyl group. The alcohol structure depends on various factors.

Alcohol Structure

Alcohol structure is mainly attributed to the presence of hydroxyl group. In alcohols, the carbon atom of the main chain is bonded to the oxygen atom of the hydroxyl group by a sigma (σ) bond. This sigma bond is formed due to the overlap of an sp3 hybridized orbital of carbon with an sp3 hybridized orbital of oxygen. Due to the repulsion between the unshared electron pairs of oxygen, the bond angle of C-O-H bonds in alcohols is slightly less than the tetrahedral angle (109°-28′).

Alcohol Structure

General Alcohol Structure

 Phenol structure

Phenol structure is mainly attributed to two factors:

  1. Partial double bond character due to the resonance in the aromatic ring because of conjugated electron pair of oxygen.
  2. Hybridization of carbon to which oxygen atom of the hydroxyl group is The carbon atom attached to oxygen is sp2 hybridized in phenol.

Hence, C-O bond length in phenol is slightly less than that in methanol.

Alcohol structure - Phenol

Phenol structure

Ether structure

  1. An ether molecule has a tetrahedral structure.
  2. Due to the repulsive interaction between the two bulky (–R) groups, the bond angle (R-O-R) is slightly greater than the tetrahedral angle.
  3. The C–O bond length in ether is almost the same as in alcohols.
ether structure

Ether Structure

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