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Chemistry LibreTexts

15: Benzene and Aromaticity

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  • In Chapter 3, we identified an aromatic compound as being a compound which contains a benzene ring (or phenyl group). It is now time to define aromaticity in a more sophisticated manner. In this chapter, we discuss the stability of benzene and other aromatic compounds, explaining it in terms of resonance and molecular orbital theory. You will study the nomenclature of aromatic compounds and the Hückel (4n + 2) rule for predicting aromaticity. The chapter concludes with a brief summary of the spectroscopic properties of arenes.

    Chapter Objectives

    After you have completed Chapter 15, you should be able to

    1. fulfil all of the detailed objectives listed under each individual section.
    2. use the information presented in this chapter, along with material from earlier chapters, to solve problems, particularly road-map problems and those requiring an understanding of spectroscopy.
    3. explain the concept of aromaticity and the stability of aromatic compounds.
    4. define, and use in context, the key terms introduced.


    Dr. Dietmar Kennepohl FCIC (Professor of Chemistry, Athabasca University)

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