Organic chemistry involves the chemistry of compounds containing carbon. Because of carbon's ability to bond to itself in a variety of ways, there are over 6 million different organic compounds.
The properties of organic compounds differ from those of inorganic compounds most notably in their relatively low melting point (usually under 300ºC), low boiling points, solubility in other organic solvents (not water), and poor electrical conductivity. Organic compounds often have slow reaction rates and provide low yields of product due to the tendency for many side reactions to occur. The length of the carbon chains or the size of the organic structure affect physical properties such as melting and boiling points.
References to organic formulas may be made either by name or by formula.
Æ'o Molecular formula: indicates the type and number of each atom in the compound, yet give no information about the bonds or the structure of the compound.
Æ'o Structural formula: indicates the complete two-dimensional structure of the compound, showing all of the bonds present.
Ex. H H.
H--C --- C v/s O-H.
Æ'o Condensed structural formula: are short-hand representations that leave the bond lines out, yet still indicate what is bonded to each carbon atom or other atom.
A large number of organic compounds fall into a category known as the hydrocarbons (consist only of C's and H's). Hydrocarbons can be divided into two groups- open or acyclic and closed or cyclic (ring).
Acyclic Straight Chain Hydrocarbons.
These hydrocarbons consist of chains of carbon atoms with hydrogens or other atoms substituted in place of the hydrogens attached to the outsides and ends of the chains. The carbons that make up the backbone of the chain bond covalently (meaning electrons are shared) to each other with either single (1 pair of e-s), double (2 pairs), or triple (3 pairs) of electrons.