Structures of Carbon

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  • Structures of Carbon
    • Fullerenes
      • Fullerenes have a covalent molecular structure as they have a fixed number of atoms per molecule
        • The number of carbons can range from 50 to 540 carbons per molecule
      • As the molecules are large fullerenes and nanotubes are solid, the melting and boiling points are low
      • Fullerenes have a carbon cage structure made up of rings of 5 and 6 carbons
        • They also contain football shaped molecules and molecules known as nanotubes
      • A Fullerene C60 is known as a Buckminster Fullerene
      • Fullerenes contain double bonds and so can decolourise bromine solution in an addition reaction
      • Fullerenes have delocalised electrons and so can not usually conduct electricity
        • Fullerenes can however conduct electricity when exposed to certain wavelengths of light and so can be known as semi-conductors
    • Diamond
      • Diamond has a covalent network structure as they do not have a fixed number of atoms bonded together
      • In diamond, strong covalent bonds are formed in all three dimensions, creating a tetrahedral structure
      • During melting, the strong covalent bonds must be broken, therefore diamond has a very high melting and boiling point
      • Diamond is very strong because of it's three dimensional network, and can only be broken by diamond
    • Graphite
      • Graphite consists of layers of covalent networks held together by weak intermolecular forces
        • These weak intermolecular forces are easily broken
        • This results in strong covalent bonds within the layers and London Dispersion Forces between the layers
      • Each layer of covalent network contributes an electron to a pool between the layers
        • These electrons are delocalised and so allow graphite to conduct electricity


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