Degrees of Oxidation Using Methane as an Example

One tool of the organic chemist is that of oxidation. There are abundant reagents, which vary in reactivity and strength, to choose from to create this reaction. A plethora of techniques guarantee specificity. All are important to the synthetic organic chemist and to industry. What is a reagent? It is a chemical that is of interest because it can react with the substance chemists wish to modify and study. Oxidizers are one kind of reagent. Consider the progressive oxidation of methane (CH₄) from its lowest to its highest oxidation state. The progression of the oxidation of methane products is written simply, CH₄ → CH₃OH → HCHO → HC(O)OH → HC(O)OOH [→ CO₂ + H₂O ] Their names (left to right) are methane, methyl alcohol, formaldehyde, formic acid, performic acid, and…
Read More

Imidazole Synthesis and Chemistry

Biology, Chemistry
Imidazole is an aromatic 5-member ring organic compound containing two skeletal atoms other than carbon. Both of those are nitrogen. One of the molecule's resonance structures, if it actually existed, would contain a secondary amine group (-NH-), an imine group (=N-), and an alkene group (-C=C-). The other resonance structure would contain two imine groups and a methylene group (-CH₂-). Those structures are drawn below. However, imidazole doesn't act like either of them. This is typical for aromatic compounds. We will briefly discuss the ring's synthesis and chemistry. Synthesis Imidazole is formed by reacting glyoxal with formaldehyde in the presence of ammonium acetate in acetic acid. The driving energy is microwave radiation. More generally, this reaction is used to produce substituted imidazoles. The basic reaction, however, is written, OHC-CHO +…
Read More