What are Aromatic Hydrocarbons?
Aromatic Hydrocarbons have at least 6 number of carbon atoms along with double bonds in the form of a ring structure. This 6-carbon structure in the aromatic hydrocarbons is called as Benzene ring. The other name for these compounds is ‘arenes.’
The compounds or hydrocarbons which consist of hydrogen and carbon atoms in it or simple words the compounds which are of carbon-based are termed as Aromatic Hydrocarbons. These compounds are also said to be stable and unsaturated compounds( Compounds which consists of carbon rings) which are cyclic in nature. The best examples of such type of compounds are the benzene and toluene which have the carbon-hydrogen pair in it.
Reactions and Types of Aromatic Hydrocarbons
The different types of Aromatic Hydrocarbon Reactions or Arene reactions are given below-
- Aromatic Substitution Reaction– In this kind of reaction, one substituent of the benzene ring especially the hydrogen atom is replaced by another type of substituent. This type of reaction is divided into two kinds namely electrophilic aromatic substitution and nucleophilic aromatic substitution. Both of them differ in the type of the reagents used.
- Coupling reactions– Coupling reactions are those in which the metals get catalyzed when coupled with radicals. These reactions lead to the formation of carbon to carbon bonds.
- Hydrogenation– This type of reactions forms saturated rings.
- Cycloadditions Reactions
Uses of Aromatic Hydrocarbons
We can see a wide number of uses of Aromatic hydrocarbons in our daily life. Some of them are listed below-
- In plants, the green pigment (chlorophyll) consists of the aromatic hydrocarbons used for the preparation of food in plants
- In the human body, the nucleic acids contain aromatic hydrocarbons such as the DNA and amino acids.
- Methylbenzene which is an aromatic hydrocarbon is used as a solvent in model glues
- Naphthalene is an important item in the production of mothballs
- For the synthesis of drugs, dyes, and explosives, an aromatic hydrocarbon named as Phenanthrene is used
- Trinitrotoluene or TNT is widely used for explosive purposes.
- Plastic industry and petrochemical industries make use of aromatic hydrocarbons extensively.
Polycyclic Aromatic Hydrocarbons
These are the hydrocarbons which comprise of aromatic rings in fused form. These are found in coal, tar, oil and some of the cooked foods such as smoked fish, burned toast, etc. One of the simple examples of this polycyclic hydrocarbon is the naphthalene. These are said to be pollutants.
Examples of Aromatic Hydrocarbons
Some of the examples of aromatic hydrocarbons are Methylbenzene, Naphthalene, Phenanthrene, Trinitrotoluene, o-dihydroxybenzene, etc.