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Chemistry LibreTexts

Radical

[ "article:topic", "authorname:ggunawardena" ]
  • Page ID
    39879
  • A radical or free radical is a species that has one or more unpaired electrons.

    eg. 1:  Hydrogen atom
    electron configuration of the hydrogen atom:

     

     

    eg. 2:  Chlorine atom
    electron configuration of the chlorine atom:

     

     

    eg. 3:   Oxygen molecule
    electron configuration of the oxygen molecule:

     

     

    eg. 4:

     

     

    eg. 5:

     

     

    Some radicals are resonance-stabilized.

    eg:

     

     

    A radical that has two unpaired electrons is called a diradical (eg. 3).

    see also alkyl radical, allylic radical, benzylic radical