Alkanes are organic compounds that consist of single-bonded carbon and hydrogen atoms. The formula for Alkanes is CnH2n+2, subdivided into three groups – chain alkanes, cycloalkanes, and the branched alkanes.

Course Contents

  • Alkanes (exemplified by ethane)
  • (i) free-radical substitution reactions
  • Hydrocarbons as fuels

Learning Outcomes

Candidates should be able to:

  • (a) explain the general unreactivity of alkanes, including towards polar reagents
  • (b) describe the chemistry of alkanes as exemplified by the following reactions of ethane:
  • (i) combustion
  • (ii) free-radical substitution by chlorine and by bromine
  • (c) describe the mechanism of free-radical substitution with particular reference to the initiation, propagation and termination reactions