Explain why carbon is necessary for lifeDescribe the function of functional groups in biological molecules

Cells room made of many complicated molecules dubbed macromolecules, such together proteins, nucleic acids (RNA and DNA), carbohydrates, and lipids. The macromolecules space a subset that organic molecules (any carbon-containing liquid, solid, or gas) the are especially important because that life. The fundamental component for every one of these macromolecules is carbon. The carbon atom has distinctive properties that enable it to kind covalent bonds to as countless as four different atoms, do this versatile aspect ideal to offer as the straightforward structural component, or “backbone,” of the macromolecules.

You are watching: How many single bonds can carbon form

Individual carbon atoms have actually an incomplete outermost electron shell. With an atomic variety of 6 (six electrons and six protons), the first two electrons fill the inner shell, leaving 4 in the 2nd shell. Therefore, carbon atom can type up to four covalent binding with various other atoms to meet the octet rule. The methane molecule gives an example: it has the chemical formula CH4. Each of its 4 hydrogen atoms develops a single covalent bond with the carbon atom by sharing a pair of electrons. This outcomes in a filled outermost shell.


Hydrocarbons room organic molecule consisting completely of carbon and also hydrogen, such together methane (CH4) explained above. We frequently use hydrocarbons in our day-to-day lives together fuels—like the propane in a gas grill or the butane in a lighter. The many covalent bonds between the atom in hydrocarbons keep a great amount the energy, i m sorry is released when these molecule are melted (oxidized). Methane, an excellent fuel, is the most basic hydrocarbon molecule, v a main carbon atom external inspection to four different hydrogen atoms, as portrayed in . The geometry the the methane molecule, wherein the atoms reside in three dimensions, is figured out by the shape of its electron orbitals. The carbons and the four hydrogen atoms type a shape well-known as a tetrahedron, with 4 triangular faces; for this reason, methane is explained as having actually tetrahedral geometry.

Methane has a tetrahedral geometry, through each that the four hydrogen atoms spaced 109.5° apart.

Hydrocarbon Rings

So far, the hydrocarbons us have questioned have to be aliphatic hydrocarbons, i beg your pardon consist of linear chains of carbon atoms. Another kind of hydrocarbon, aromatic hydrocarbons, consists of closed rings of carbon atoms. Ring structures are found in hydrocarbons, periodically with the visibility of double bonds, which have the right to be viewed by to compare the framework of cyclohexane to benzene in . Examples of biological molecules the incorporate the benzene ring include some amino acids and cholesterol and also its derivatives, consisting of the hormones estrogen and also testosterone. The benzene ring is likewise found in the herbicide 2,4-D. Benzene is a natural component of crude oil oil and also has been classified together a carcinogen. Some hydrocarbons have both aliphatic and aromatic portions; beta-carotene is an example of together a hydrocarbon.

Carbon can form five-and six membered rings. Single or dual bonds may affix the carbons in the ring, and nitrogen may be substituted for carbon. Isomers

The three-dimensional location of atoms and chemical bonds within organic molecules is central to expertise their chemistry. Molecules the share the same chemical formula yet differ in the location (structure) of your atoms and/or chemistry bonds are recognized as isomers. Structural isomers (like butane and isobutene displayed in a) differ in the location of your covalent bonds: both molecule have four carbons and ten hydrogens (C4H10), however the different setup of the atoms within the molecules leader to differences in their chemical properties. For example, due to their different chemical properties, butane is suitable for use as a fuel for cigarette lighters and torches, vice versa, isobutene is suited for usage as a refrigerant and a propellant in spray cans.

See more: Isitbullshit: Does Burnt Toast Help An Upset Stomach ? Burnt Toast & Tea For Vomiting

Geometric isomers, ~ above the various other hand, have similar placements of your covalent bonds but differ in how these bonds room made come the neighboring atoms, especially in carbon-to-carbon twin bonds. In the basic molecule butene (C4H8), the two methyl groups (CH3) have the right to be ~ above either side of the dual covalent bond main to the molecule, as illustrated in b. As soon as the carbons are bound on the very same side the the twin bond, this is the cis configuration; if they room on opposite political parties of the twin bond, that is a trans configuration. In the trans configuration, the carbons kind a an ext or less linear structure, conversely, the carbons in the cis configuration make a bending (change in direction) that the carbon backbone.