Skip to main content
Chemistry LibreTexts

1: Organic Structures and Bonding

  • Page ID
    170397
    • 1.1: Prelude to Atoms, Electron Configurations, and Lewis Structures
      We will begin with a reminder of how chemists depict bonding in organic molecules with the 'Lewis structure' drawing convention, focusing on the concept of 'formal charge'. We will review the common bonding patterns of the six elements necessary for all forms of life on earth - carbon, hydrogen, nitrogen, oxygen, sulfur, and phosphorus - plus the halogens (fluorine, chlorine, bromine, and iodine).
    • 1.2: Drawing organic structures
      Now that you have had a chance to go back to your introductory chemistry textbook to review some basic information about atoms, orbitals, bonds, and molecules, let's direct our attention a little more closely to the idea of charged species. You know that an ion is a molecule or atom that has an associated positive or negative charge.
    • 1.3: Structures of some important biomolecules
      Because we are focusing in this textbook on biologically relevant organic chemistry, we will frequently be alluding to important classes of biological molecules such as lipids, carbohydrates, proteins, and nucleic acids (DNA and RNA). Now is a good time to go through a quick overview of what these molecules look like.
    • 1.4: Resonance
      These two drawings are an example of what is referred to in organic chemistry as resonance contributors: two or more different Lewis structures depicting the same molecule or ion that, when considered together, do a better job of approximating delocalized pi-bonding than any single structure. By convention, resonance contributors are linked by a double-headed arrow, and are sometimes enclosed by brackets:
    • 1.5: Non-covalent interactions
      To understand the nature of noncovalent interactions, we first must return to covalent bonds and delve into the subject of dipoles. Many of the covalent bonds that we have seen – between two carbons, for example, or between a carbon and a hydrogen –involve the approximately equal sharing of electrons between the two atoms in the bond. In these examples, the two atoms have approximately the same electronegativity.
    • 1.6: Physical properties of organic compounds
      Virtually all of the organic chemistry that you will see in this course takes place in the solution phase. In the organic laboratory, reactions are often run in nonpolar or slightly polar solvents such as toluene (methylbenzene), dichloromethane, or diethylether.
    • 1.7: Valence Bond Theory
      Valence bond theory is most often used to describe bonding in organic molecules. In this model, bonds are considered to form from the overlap of two atomic orbitals on different atoms, each orbital containing a single electron. In looking at simple inorganic molecules such as molecular hydrogen (H2) or hydrogen fluoride (HF), our present understanding of s and p atomic orbitals will suffice. In order to explain the bonding in organic molecules, however, we will need to introduce hybrid orbitals
    • 1.8: Problems for Chapter 1a
    • 1.9: Problems for Chapter 1b