Lecture 3 - Rate and Selectivity in Radical-Chain Reactions

author: J. Michael McBride, Department of Chemistry, Yale University
recorded by: Yale University
published: Aug. 19, 2014,   recorded: January 2011,   views: 1593
released under terms of: Creative Commons Attribution No Derivatives (CC-BY-ND)
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The reactivity-selectivity principle explains why bromine atoms are more selective that chlorine atoms in abstracting hydrogen atoms from carbon. A free-radical mechanism for adding HBr to alkenes explains its anti-Markovnikov regiospecificity. Careful analysis is required to understand kinetic order for reactions involving catalysts. Termination of radical-chain reactions can make their rate half-order in the initiator. Selectivity due to protonation of radicals and their reaction partners illustrates the importance of ionic charge in determining reaction rates.

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