Radical Reactions (23 min)

Although alkanes are a relatively unreactive class of organic compound, there exists one laboratory reaction that allows us to convert them into haloalkanes. This reaction, the radical halogenation of alkanes, is the subject of this tutorial. (Runtime = 23:07)

Student Learning Outcomes
After viewing this tutorial and practicing problems from this website and your textbook, you should be able to:
• Predict the products of the combustion of any hydrocarbon.
• Understand how halogen radicals are generated.
• Understand the reactivity and selectivity principles behind radical chlorination and bromination reactions of alkanes.
• Provide the mechanism of any radical halogenation reaction and be able to identify the steps of initiation, propagation, and termination.
• Predict the major and minor products of radical halogenation reactions of alkanes.

Practice Problems
Here are some problems to get you started. You should first try each on a piece of paper. Then, place your cursor over the graphic and click on right arrow that appears to see the answer. The right and left arrows allow you to move back and forth between problems. Please note that these are not the only types of problems/questions that exist on this topic. Refer to your textbook and any problems your instructor provides you for more practice with this subject.


© Thomas Poon 1999