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Chemistry LibreTexts

Reactivity of Aldehydes & Ketones

Aldehydes are typically more reactive than ketones due to the following factors.

  1. Aldehydes are less hindered than ketones (a hydrogen atom is smaller than any other organic group).
  2. The carbonyl carbon in aldehydes generally has more partial positive charge than in ketones due to the electron-donating nature of alkyl groups. Aldehydes only have one e- donor group while ketones have two.