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Straight Chain - Branched Chain - Boiling Point.

What is a Straight Chain?

A straight chain is made from carbon atoms which are
joined onto no more than two other carbon atoms.

What is a Branched Chain?

A branched chain is made from carbon atoms
where at least one carbon* atom
is joined onto more than two other carbon atoms.


What are the Isomers of Butane?

Of the isomers of butane, n-butane has a straight chain,
n-butane Structural Formula

and 2-methylpropane has a branched chain.
2-methylpropane Structural Formula


The two isomers have different boiling points
(and other physical properties).
n-butane has a higher boiling point than 2-methylpropane.

 
What is the Effect of Chain Branching on Boiling Point?

In general, straight chain molecules have a higher
boiling point than isomers with a branched
chain.
The reason is that s
traight chain molecules can
line up beside each other more effectively
than branched
chain molecules and therefore
have a higher intermolecular force of attraction.

In addition to straight chains and branched chains,
carbon atoms can form rings.

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