Aliphatic Hydrocarbons

Aliphatic Hydrocarbons

Aliphatic Hydrocarbons Definition

Aliphatic Hydrocarbons are the type of hydrocarbons in which various carbon atoms joint together to form an open chain.
We just learn aliphatic compound definition. Now we learn more about aliphatic compounds (hydrocarbons) in below sections.

What are Aliphatic Hydrocarbons

Aliphatic compound is an aliphatic hydrocarbon compound containing Carbon atoms and Hydrogen atoms. Also aliphatic compound contains carbon and hydrogen in open straight or branched chain. We can also say that aliphatic hydrocarbon compounds are open chain compounds and do not contain aromatic rings. We study about aliphatic hydrocarbon under organic chemistry.
To understand in better way we take example of simplest aliphatic hydrocarbon i.e. Methane (CH4). Methan gas is a aliphatic compound. It contains 4 hydrogen atoms attached to a carbon atom.
Aliphatic hydrocarbon also contain some other atoms along with hydrogen that bound to carbon. These atoms are oxygen, nitrogen, chlorine, and sulfur but percentage of bounding of these atoms to carbon atom as compared to hydrogen is very less.

Classification of Aliphatic Hydrocarbons

Aliphatic Hydrocarbons can be classified into 2 categories i.e.
  • Saturated aliphatic-hydrocarbons
  • Unsaturated aliphatic-hydrocarbons.

Saturated Hydrocarbons

Saturated Aliphatic Hydrocarbons are the hydrocarbons, in which all the carbon valencies are fully saturated. So, all 4 carbon valencies are fully satisfied by 4 carbon atoms or groups. These type of compounds contains single covalent C-C & C-H type of bonds. These type of compounds generally not react with most compounds hence called as paraffins. IUPAC name for this class of compounds is alkanes. Example: Methane, Ethane, Propane etc.

Unsaturated Hydrocarbons

Unsaturated Aliphatic Hydrocarbons are the hydrocarbons, in which all the carbon valencies are not fully saturated. So, all 4 carbon valencies are not fully satisfied. Hence, they contain carbon carbon double bond or carbon carbon triple bond. As a result, 2 carbon atoms are linked by double or triple bond. So this class of compounds do not contain maximum possible hydrogen atoms therefore, they are unsaturated aliphatic hydrocarbons.
Unsaturated Aliphatic Hydrocarbons, further subdivided into 2 groups i.e.
  • Alkenes
  • Alkynes.
Alkenes are the Unsaturated Aliphatic Hydrocarbon containing carbon carbon double bond. Means 2 carbon atoms are linked together by double bond. Example: Olefins, Ethylene, Propene, etc.
Alkynes are the Unsaturated Aliphatic Hydrocarbon containing carbon carbon triple bond. Means, 2 carbon atoms are linked together by triple bond. Example: Acetylenes, Ethyne, Propyne, etc.

List of Aliphatic Compounds or Aliphatic Hydrocarbon

To list aliphatic compounds or aliphatic hydro-carbons, we create below table. We arrange all aliphatic compounds as per carbon atoms they contain.
No. of Carbon AtomAliphatic compound or
Aliphatic hydrocarbon
2Acetylene, Ethylene, Ethane
3Propyne, Propene, Propane
41,2-Butadiene, 1-Butyne, 1-Butene, Butane
6Cyclohexene, Hexane
7Cycloheptane, Methylcyclohexane, Heptane
8Cubane, Octane
10Dicyclopentadiene, Phellandrene,
α-Terpinene, Limonene, Decane
Do you know, Hydrocarbons extracted from mother earth. And if this extraction process not followed is not done properly, it gives many side effects.

Side Effects of Hydrocarbon Extraction

Hydrocarbons are extracted with fracking process. Some of the side effects of this is contamination of water with methane and drilling chemicals. Emission of explosive and climate warming methane gas, cutting of Forest for extraction
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Books to Learn More About Aliphatic Hydrocarbon

1. Organic Chemistry, Volume One: Part I: Aliphatic Compounds Part II: Alicyclic Compounds
2. Densities of Aliphatic Hydrocarbon: Alkenes, Alkadienes, Alkynes, and Miscellaneous Compounds (Landolt-Börnstein: Numerical Data and Functional Relationships in Science and Technology – New Series)
3. An Evaluation of Format as an Electron Donor to Facilitate Palladium-Catalyzed Destruction of Chlorinated Aliphatic Hydrocarbon

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