Alcohol Protonation: Synthesis Intermediate

[caption id="attachment_20866" align="alignright" width="440"] Primary, secondary, and tertiary alcohols.[/caption] What is alcohol protonation? An alcohol is an organic compound. Some examples are ethanol (ethyl alcohol), isopropyl alcohol, and t-butyl alcohol. They have the generic chemical formula ROH. H is hydrogen, O is oxygen, and R is any aliphatic (carbon chain) group. Alcohols are important organic synthetic reagents. During a reaction process, alcohols may be protonated by mineral acids.¹ Alcohol protonation is the adding of a proton. Ethanol, for instance, protonates accordingly, C₂H₅-OH + H⁺ → C₂H₅-OH₂⁺ Notice from the protonated structure that the final three atoms closely resemble water (H₂O). Water is quite stable. Thus, it is a “good leaving group.” What remains is a carbocation. It should be noted is the charge is now not on the oxygen atom.…
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