Why is the reaction between an alcohol and sodium become LESS VIGOROUS as the length of the carbon chain INCREASES?

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Thank you. :)

Posted Wed 30th January, 2013 @ 19:28 by Tilly - Team GR

1 Answer

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i haven't actually studied this yet but maybe it's because as the length of the carbon chain increases, there's more atoms so more/stronger van der waals forces in the alcohol therefore it's harder to break them apart so more energy is required to break the bonds. you have to break bonds in order to form new ones so if it's harder to break the bonds then it'll be hard to form new bonds and react with anything. so to sum up: increase in carbon chain = increased/stronger van der waal's forces = harder to break/form bonds = less reactivity and a less vigorous reaction........ i'm guessing.....

Answered Thu 31st January, 2013 @ 01:26 by Rosita