Carboxylic acids

Alkene Reactions: Ozonolysis

Alkene Reactions: Ozonolysis

April 23, 2013

Today’s post represents not so much a pattern in alkene reactions, so much as it does a very common reaction that bears mentioning along with the rest. What makes this reaction special is that it does not simpl…

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Khan Academy Videos for Organic Chemistry, Part 6

Khan Academy Videos for Organic Chemistry, Part 6

October 30, 2012

In this post (the 6th of 6) we finish up going through all the Khan Academy videos for organic chemistry [videos 65-73]. For previous posts in this series, see [1 2 3 4 5] Video #65 – Keto-Enol Tautomerism Lengt…

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The Malonic Ester Synthesis

The Malonic Ester Synthesis

August 14, 2012

Apropos of nothing, here’s a post about a series of reactions that is a common source of student difficulties. It’s called the malonic ester synthesis, and it’s an interesting way of making substitu…

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Acid Base Reactions Are Fast

Acid Base Reactions Are Fast

May 21, 2012

Common dilemma in organic chemistry as you move through the latter parts of Org 1 and then into Org 2: When more than one reaction is possible, how do you know which one will happen? In a steel cage match between an a…

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A Handy Rule of Thumb for Acid-Base Reactions

A Handy Rule of Thumb for Acid-Base Reactions

May 17, 2012

Last time I talked about pKa and how it’s the closest thing we have to a universal measurement of  the strengths of all kinds of different acids and bases.  I also referred to a post on how to use a pKa table …

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Reaction Friday – Fischer Esterification

Reaction Friday – Fischer Esterification

April 14, 2012

The Fischer esterification is one of the most important reactions of carboxylic acids. Treatment of carboxylic acids with an alcohol in the presence of acid catalyst leads to the formation of esters, along with the el…

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Reagent Friday – Diazomethane (CH2N2)

Reagent Friday – Diazomethane (CH2N2)

November 5, 2011

In a blatant plug for the Reagent Guide and the Reagents App for iPhone, each Friday  I profile a different reagent that is commonly encountered in Org 1/ Org 2.  One of the things about learning organic chemist…

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Summary Sheet #8: The Oxidation Ladder

Summary Sheet #8: The Oxidation Ladder

August 15, 2011

Following up on this post, here’s an attempt at trying to put many of the reactions in organic chemistry in perspective, from the standpoint of oxidation state. Note that there’s a lot of gaps – very…

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Oxidation Ladders

Oxidation Ladders

August 8, 2011

Once you get a handle on oxidations and reductions, you might start to notice that with some molecules these reactions can proceed in sequences. For example, if you start with an alkane with a CH3 group, the alkane ca…

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Oxidation and Reduction in Organic Chemistry

Oxidation and Reduction in Organic Chemistry

August 1, 2011

Iron smelting!  Photo credit: http://sclowcountryoutdoors.blogspot.com/2011/02/iron-smelting-at-acba.html In the beginning, the term actually made sense. When the alchemists and medieval metallurgists started doing …

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