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Organic Chemistry – Introduction Definition Keywords The Components Examples The Bonds Types What is Organic Chemistry?

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organic chemistry introduction

Organic Chemistry – Introduction



The Components


The Bonds


what is organic chemistry
What is Organic Chemistry?
  • Once upon a time chemists believed that certain chemical such as glucose, alcohol, proteins and petrol could only be made by living organisms. Therefore they were given the name ‘organic chemicals.’
  • It was later discovered that they could be made in the laboratory and that they all had one thing in common – they were all compounds of carbon
keywords before we begin
Keywords – Before we begin
  • There are a number of key words that we must revise before we begin:
    • Non-metals – A group of elements that are found on the right-hand side of the periodic table. They are not malleable, lustrous and ductile, and they are poor conductors of heat and electricity
    • Molecule – a group of atoms joined together with covalent bonds. They can be elements or compounds
    • Covalent bonds – a bond between two non-metal atoms, where the outer shell electrons are shared to complete the electron shells
the components of organic chemicals
The Components of Organic Chemicals
  • The atoms that make up organic chemicals can be compared to Lego® blocks. They have a certain number of connections (1, 2 or 4) and they can be arranged in a number of different ways:
    • Carbon – the main building block of organic chemicals – it can form four covalent bonds
    • Oxygen - this ‘add on’ can form two covalent bonds
    • Hydrogen – this atom basically fills in any free bonds – it has the ability to make one bond only
  • There are a few other non-metals that we will look at this year but they are less common than the one mentioned above:
    • Nitrogen – can form three bonds
    • Halogens – can form one bond
examples of organic molecules
Examples of Organic Molecules
  • Organic molecules can be drawn in a number of different ways. Here is the same molecule (ethanol) – note the number of bonds that each component has formed:
the bonds
The Bonds
  • Organic molecules only form covalent bonds but there are a few variations:
    • Double bonds – when an atom forms two covalent bonds with another atom. They are drawn like this: C=C
    • Triple bonds – when an atom forms three covalent bonds with another atom. They are drawn like this: C≡C
  • Here are some examples of each – note how many bonds each component has:
types of organic molecules
Types of Organic Molecules
  • There are a number of different types of organic chemicals. We identify each type by a combination of atoms that it will contain. This combination is called a functional group
  • These examples are called Hydrocarbons
type of organics ii
Type of Organics II

Here are some others that contain oxygen or halogens


Functional Group





Carboxylic acid

Ethanoic acid


Methyl propanoate


Chloro methane

chain lengths
Chain Lengths
  • Each type of chemical can exist with various numbers of carbons bonded together into a chain
  • Later we will learn that the name of each organic molecule is determined by the length of the longest carbon chain in the molecule