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Friday, 24 February 2017

Alcohols, Phenols and Ethers - II


Physical properties of alcohols and phenols:


a) Boiling points

Boiling points of alcohols and phenols are higher in comparison to other classes of compounds. This is because the –OH group in alcohols and phenols is involved in intermolecular hydrogen bonding.
The boiling points of alcohols and phenols increase with increase in the number of carbon atoms. This is because of increase in van der Waals forces with increase in surface area.
In alcohols, the boiling points decrease with increase of branching in carbon chain. This is because of decrease in van der Waals forces with decrease in surface area.

b) Solubility

Solubility of alcohols and phenols are soluble in water due to their ability to form hydrogen bonds with water molecules. The solubility of alcohols decreases with increase in size of alkyl/aryl (hydrophobic) groups.

Chemical properties of alcohols:

I.Reactions involving cleavage of O–H bond: Alcohols react as nucleophiles:
a) Reaction with metals
b) Esterification reaction

II. Reactions of alcohols involving cleavage of carbon – oxygen (C–O) bond:

a) Reaction with hydrogen halides
b) Reaction with phosphorus trihalides
c) Dehydration reaction
d) Oxidation reaction

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