Carbon and Its Compounds Class 10 Notes

Carbon is the most important element because it forms the largest number of compounds which are useful in our daily life. In carbon and its compounds class 10 notes, we shall study carbon and its compounds.

Carbon and Its Compounds class 10: For Class 10 (High School Student)

What is Carbon?

Carbon is an element it occurs in the free state as well as in the combined state. 70% of our body is made up of carbon. It forms the largest number of compounds.

Important Information About Carbon

  • The earth’s crust contains only 0.02% of carbon.
  • Its atomic number is 6.
  • Its mass number is 1.20.
  • Its atomic mass is 12.011.
  • Its melting point is 3550ºC and its boiling point is 4830ºC.

What is Organic Compounds?

The organic compounds contain carbon essentially and hydrogen mostly along with other elements like oxygen, sulphur, nitrogen, halogens, etc. are called organic compounds.

What is Coal?

It is a naturally occurring solid fuel that exists in the form of varying depths below the earth’s surface. It is formed by the decay of vegetation that grew 40 to 300 million years ago, followed by chemical processes of condensation and polymerization under influence of temperature, pressure and time.

What is Petroleum?

It is an oil found in rocks. It is a mixture of solid, liquid and gaseous hydrocarbons. It is a source of petrol, diesel, kerosene, petroleum ether, petroleum coke, petroleum wax, etc.

What is Carbonates?

They are compounds of carbonic acid. They are found in the earth crust, e.g., CaCO3, MgCO3, Na2CO3, Na2CO3, ZnCO3. They are thermally stable.

What are Hydrogen Carbonates?

They contain HCO3ions. They are formed by replacing one H+ of carbonic acid, e.g., NaHCO3, Ca(HCO3)2, Mg(HCO3)2. They are soluble in water. They are thermally unstable, i.e., decompose on heating to form carbonates, CO2 and H2O.

What is Chemical Bond?

It is a force of attraction that holds the two atoms together.

carbon chemical bonds

What is Covalent Bond?

It is the bond formed by equal sharing of electrons, e.g., Hydrogen has one valence electron. It can share one valence electron with other hydrogen atoms to form H2 molecule so as to acquire the nearest noble gas configuration. The bond between two hydrogen atoms by sharing one electron each is called a covalent bond.

Covalency of Carbon

Carbon has four valence electrons. It cannot lose four electrons since a very high amount of energy will be required to lose four electrons to form C4+ ion. There is a strong force of attraction between the nucleus and valence electrons.

Carbon cannot gain four electrons to form C4– ion because six protons cannot hold 10 electrons easily and there will be strong inter electronic repulsion.

Carbon can share four electrons easily with other atoms of carbon and other elements to acquire stable electronic configuration.

Hydrogen Molecule

When two atoms of hydrogen share one electron each, a single covalent bond is formed as shown below

(Single covalent bond between two hydrogen atoms)

Chlorine Molecule

Chlorine has 7 valence electrons. It can share one electron with other chlorine atoms to form Cl2.

chlorine Molecule(Single covalent bond between two chlorine atoms)

Single Covalent Bond

It is a bond formed by sharing one electron by each of the atoms. It is represented by a line between two atoms.

Hydrogen Fluoride

When one hydrogen atom shares one electron with one electron of fluorine, hydrogen acquires two electrons whereas fluorine acquires 8 electrons and becomes stable. They form a single covalent bond.

Hydrogen Fluoride

(Single Covalent bond between hydrogen and fluorine)


In the formation of H2O, each hydrogen atom shares one electron with an oxygen atom so that oxygen completes its octet and hydrogen acquires the nearest nobles gas configuration.


Nitrogen has five valence electrons. It shares one electron with each of the three hydrogen atoms to form NH3.



Carbon has four valence electrons. It needs four electrons to complete its octet. It shares four electrons with four hydrogen atoms and forms four single covalent bonds.

Double Covalent Bond

When two atoms share two electrons each to acquire a stable electronic configuration, a double covalent bond is formed. It is denoted by = (two lines)

Oxygen Molecule

When two oxygen atoms share two electrons each to complete their octet, a double covalent bond is formed.

oxygen moleculeA double covalent bond between two oxygen atoms)

Ethene (C2H4)

When two carbon atoms share two electrons with each other and each ‘C’ shares two electrons with two hydrogen atoms, they complete their octet and form a double covalent bond between two carbon atoms.


Triple Covalent Bond

When an atom shares three valence electrons with each other or other atoms, a triple covalent bond is formed. It is denoted by º(three lines)


Nitrogen has five valence electrons. It needs three more electrons to complete its octet. It shares three electrons with other atoms of nitrogen to form a triple covalent bond.

(Triple covalent bond between two nitrogen atoms)

Ethyne (C2H2)

When two carbon atoms share three electrons with each other and each carbon shares one electron with hydrogen atom, they complete their octet and form a triple covalent bond with each other.


Ethane (C2H6)

In the ethane, two carbon atoms share one electron each forming a single covalent bond with each other. Each carbon shares one electron with three hydrogen atoms to complete their octet, e.g.,


Carbon dioxide

Carbon has four valence electrons. It shares two electron with one of the oxygen and two electrons with other atoms of oxygen to form a double covalent bond.

carbon dioxide Methyl chloride (CH3Cl)

Carbon has four valence electrons. It shares one electron with a chlorine atom and one electron with each of three hydrogen atoms forming four single bonds.

Methyl Chloride Carbon tetrachloride (CCl4)

Carbon shares one electron with each of four chlorine atoms forming four single covalent bonds.

Carbon tetrachloride

Properties of Covalent Compounds

Physical State

Covalent compounds can exist in solid, liquid as well as gaseous state e.g., CH4 is gas, CHCl3 is liquid, glucose is solid.

Solubility :

  • They are generally insoluble in water and in polar solvents because they cannot form ions in an aqueous solution.
  • They are soluble in non-polar organic solvents like ether, benzene, CCl4, CS2, CHCl3, acetone, etc.

Electrical Conductivity

Covalent compounds are poor conductors of electricity because they do not contain ions or free electrons for conduction of electricity, e.g., CCl4, benzene, toluene does not conduct electricity.

Melting and Boiling Point 

Melting and boiling points of covalent compounds are low due to weak forces of attraction between molecules. Less energy is required to overcome these forces of attraction, e.g.,

Compound Melting point

(in K)

Boiling Point

(in K)

1. Acetic acid (CH3COOH) 290 391
2. Chloroform (CHCl3) 209 334
3. Carbon tetrachloride (CCl4) 250 349.5
4 Ethanol (C2H5OH) 156 351
5. Methane (CH4) 90 111
6. Methanoic acid (HCOOH) 281.4 373.5


Allotropy is a property due to which an element can exist in more than one form which differs in physical properties but has similar chemical properties, e.g., carbon, sulphur, phosphorus, oxygen show allotropy,

Isotopes of Carbon

Naturally, occurring carbon has two stable isotopes (98.9%) and (1.1%)  in addition to traces of radioactive isotope which is used to determine the age of archaeological specimen of organic origin. The isotope is the international standard for atomic mass measurement and assigned a mass of 12.00000 units.

Allotropes of Carbon

The carbon exists both in crystalline and amorphous forms. The two well-known allotropes of carbon are diamond and graphite.


The third form of carbon known as fullerenes were discovered by H.W. Kroto, R.F. Curl, and R.E. Smalley. Fullerenes consist of hollow cages of carbon atoms. They are large spheroidal molecules of composition C2n; two important members of this family are C60 and C70. The 1996 Nobel Prize was awarded to the above scientists for the discovery of fullerenes.


Differences Between Diamond and Graphite

Diamond Graphite
1. It is the hardest substance known and its density is 3.5 g/ml. 1. Graphite is soft and slippery with a density of 2.3 g/ml
2. Its crystals are octahedral, colourless and transparent 2. It is black coloured, opaque and has hexagonal crystals.
3. In diamond, each carbon atom is covalently bonded to four other carbon atoms along with four corners of a regular tetrahedron. This pattern extends in three dimensions. Diamond is hard due to the strong covalent bonds present in it. 3. In graphite, carbon atoms are bonded together in flat layers by strong covalent bonds in a regular hexagon. These layers are held together by much weaker van der Waal’s forces, therefore the crystals of graphite are soft and slippery.
4. Diamond is non-conductor of electricity 4. Graphite is a conductor of electricity.
5. The standard heat of formation (DHfº) of the diamond is 29 kJ mol–1.

Structure of Diamond

5. It is thermodynamically most stable. It DHfº= 0

Structure of Graphite

Other forms of Carbon

Other forms of elemental carbon are carbon black, coke and charcoal. They are impure forms of graphite or fullerenes. Carbon black is obtained by burning hydrocarbons in a limited supply of air. Charcoal and coke are obtained by heating wood or coal respectively at high temperatures in absence of air.      

 Uses of Carbon

Forms of carbon Uses
Diamond Gemstone, cutting, drilling, grinding, polishing, industry.
Graphite Steel manufacture (reducing agent refractories, pencils, high-temperature crucibles, electrodes in electrolytic extraction of elements, neutron moderator in nuclear reactors, high strength composite materials.
Coke Steel manufacture, fuel.
Carbon black Rubber industry, pigments in ink, paints and plastics
Activated charcoal Decolourizing agent in sugar industry, purification of chemicals and gases by adsorption, catalyst.
Wood charcoal Fuel

Unique Nature of Carbon

Carbon has a small size and therefore can form a strong covalent bond with other atoms. It forms maximum number of compounds. Our body is made up of carbon compounds like proteins fats, nucleic acids.     


It is a property due to which carbon can form bonds with other atoms of carbon. Carbon shows the property of catenation to the maximum extent because it is small in size and can form strong covalent bonds.                        

Tetravalency of carbon

Carbon has four valence electrons. It can share four electrons with other atoms of carbon as well as oxygen, hydrogen, nitrogen, sulphur and halogen.

A large number of organic compounds

They are due to the tetravalency of carbon and the property of catenation.       

Vital Force Theory

It was proposed that ‘vital force’ is necessary for the formation of these organic compounds. They can only be obtained from living organisms.

Preparation of First Organic Compound in Laboratory

In 1828, Wohler prepared the first organic compound urea by heating ammonium cyanate by isomerisation reaction. 



Those compounds which contain carbon and hydrogen only are called hydrocarbons, e.g., CH4(methane), C2H6 (ethane), C2H4 (ethene), C2H2 (ethyne), etc.

Saturated hydrocarbons

Those hydrocarbons which contain single bonds only are called saturated hydrocarbons. e.g., CH4 (methane), C2H6(ethane), C3H8(propene), C4H10 (butane) etc.

Saturated Hydrocarbons

Unsaturated hydrocarbons

Those hydrocarbons in which valency of carbon is satisfied by double or triple bond are called unsaturated hydrocarbons, e.g., C2H4, C3H6, C2H2.

Unsaturated Hydrocarbon

Straight Chain Compounds

Those compounds which contain straight carbon chains are called straight chain compounds, e.g.,

Straight Chain Reaction

Branched Chain Compounds

Those compounds which are branched are called branched-chain compounds, e.g.,

Closed Chain Compounds or Ring Compounds

Cyclic compounds are called closed chain or ring compounds, e.g.,

Ring Compounds

Aromatic Compounds

Benzene and its derivatives (which contain benzene ring) are called aromatic compounds, e.g., C6H6

Aromatic Compounds


All compounds in which carbon and hydrogen are attached with single bonds are called alkanes. The general formula of alkane from which all the members of family can be derived is CnH2n+2, e.g., CH4, C2H6, C3H8 C4H10, C5H12, C6H14


Those unsaturated hydrocarbons which have one or more double bonds are called alkenes. Their general formula is CnH2n, e.g., C2H4(ethene), C3H6 (propene), C4H8(butene), C5H10(pentene), etc


Those unsaturated hydrocarbons which contain one or more triple bonds are called alkynes. The general formula of alkynes is CnH2n–2, e.g., C2H2(ethyne), C3H4 (propyne), C4H6(butyne), C5H8 (pentyne), C6H10 (hexyne).

Functional Group

It is atom or group of atoms or reactive part of compound which largely determines the chemical properties of compound, e.g., –OH(Alcohol), –CHO

Functional Group

Homologous Series 

It is a series of compounds which are derived from same general formula, having same functional group, similar chemical properties and show gradation in physical properties. Each member differs from successive member by
–CH2–. The difference in molecular weight between two successive members is 12 u.

Characteristic of Homologous Series

  • They have same general formula.
  • They have same functional group
  • They have general methods of preparation.
  • They have similar chemical properties.
  • They show gradation in physical properties like melting and boiling points increase with increase in molecular weight. For example boiling point of alcohols goes on increasing with increase in molecular weight.
  • Solubility in a particular solvent shows gradation with increase in molecular weight, e.g., solubility of alcohols in water goes on decreasing with increase in molecular weight.


General Formula Molecular Formula CnH2n+2 Structural Formula Where n is the number of carbon atoms Condensed Structural Formula Name
When n = 1, CH4 CH4 Methane
When n = 2, C2H6 CH3–CH3 Ethane
When n = 3, C3H8 CH3–CH2–CH3 Propane
For n = 4, C4H10 has two isomers CH3–CH2–CH2–CH3 n-Butane
Isobutane IUPAC name is 2-methylpropane
For n = 5, C5H12 has three isomers CH3–CH2–CH2–CH2–CH3 n-Pentane
Isopentane IUPAC name is 2-methylbutane
Neopentane IUPAC name is 2, 2-dimethyl propane

IUPAC stands for International Union of Pure and Applied Chemistry. IUPAC names are used for International communication. Rules for IUPAC Naming of Organic Compounds :

(i)   Select the possible longest chain containing the functional group.

e.g., longest chain contains 5 carbon atoms.

, longest chain contains 4 carbon atoms.

(ii)  The number of carbon atoms in the parent compounds is denoted by proper prefix :

Meth for one     eth for two      Prop for three

but for four        pent for five    hex for six

hept for seven    oct for eight    non for nine

e.g., in CH3–CH2–CH2–CH2–CH2–CH3 the parent chain contains 6 Carbon atoms, it is called

Hexane. ane is the suffix for alkanes (saturated hydrocarbons) having single bonds only.

(iii) Groups attached to the parent chain are indicated by their names and prefixing the number of carbon to which they are attached in parent chain.

Alkyl group         CH3— is called methyl

has general          C2H5—is called ethyl

formula CnH2n+1   CH3CH2CH2— is

called n-propyl


is called 2-methylpropane because methyl group is attached to second carbon atom.

(iv) The counting of carbon chain is done in such a way that the carbon attached to the alkyl group or functional group gets the minimum number, e.g.,

is 2-methylbutane and not 3-methylbutane.

(v)  If more than one identical groups are attached to same or different carbon atoms, prefix the numbers of carbon to which they are attached. The number of these groups are indicated as : di for two, tri for three, tetra for four and so on, e.g.

2, 2-dimethylpropane because there are two methyl groups (dimethyl) and both are attached to second carbon therefore 2, 2-dimethylpropane because parent carbon chain contains three carbon atoms Similarly,

is 2, 3-dimethylbutane

(vi) For double bond in alkenes suffix-ene, for triple bond suffix-yne is used in alkynes. In alkenes and alkynes, number of carbon atoms after which double or triple bond is present is also prefixed, e.g.,

is but-2-ene because double bond is after second carbon atom.

  1. Electronic Formula of CH4
    Electronic Formula of Methane

In methane, the carbon atom shares four electrons one each with four hydrogen atoms forming four covalent bonds. The four atoms of hydrogen in methane are arranged in a regular tetrahedron and carbon atom at the centre of the tetrahedron.

  1. Unsaturated Hydrocarbons : Those hydrocarbons which contain at least on double or triple bond between two carbon atoms.

Double bond is formed by sharing of two pairs of electrons, e.g.,

Ethene is

Triple bond is formed by sharing of three pairs of electrons between two carbon atoms, e.g.,

Ethyne is


  1. Alkenes : They have general formula CnH2n where n is the number of carbon atoms.
Molecular Formula Structural Formula Condensed Structural Formula Name
n = 2, C2H4 CH2=CH2 Ethene
n = 3, C3H6 CH2=CH–CH3 Propene
n = 4, C4H8 has three isomers CH2=CH–CH2–CH3 But-1-ene
CH3–CH=CH–CH3 But-2-ene


  1. Alkynes : General formula is CnH2n–2.
n = 2, C2H2 H–CºC–H CHºCH Ethyne
n = 3, C3H4 CHºC–CH3 Propyne
n = 4, C4H6 has two isomers CHºC–CH2–CH3 But-1-yne
CH3–CHºCH–CH3 But-2-yne
n = 5, C5H8 has three isomers CHºC–CH2–CH2–CH3 Pent-1-yne
CH3–CºC–CH2–CH3 Pent-2-yne


  1. Alcohols: Alcohols are carbon compounds containing –OH group attached to carbon atom. The general formula of alcohol is R–OH where ‘R’ is an alkyl group and –OH is a functional group.

The name of alcohol is derived by replacing – e in the name of alkane from which it is derived by the suffix -ol. For example methanol (CH3OH), alcohol is derived by substituting ‘H’ of methane by –OH.


      Alkanes Formula of Alcohol Common Name IUPAC Name
CH4(Methane) CH3OH Methyl alcohol Methanol
C2H6 (Ethane) C2H5OH Ethyl alcohol Ethanol
C3H8 (Propane) C3H7OH Propyl alcohol Propanol
C4H10 (Butane) C4H9OH Butyl alcohol Butanol
  1. Alkyl halide : General formula is CnH2n+1 X, where X is Cl, Br, I, F
Molecular Formula Structural Formula Common Name IUPAC Name
n = 1    CH3Cl CH3Cl Methyl chloride Chloromethane
n = 2    C2H5Cl CH3CH2Cl Ethyl chloride Chloroethane
n = 3    C3H7Cl CH3CH2CH2Cl n-propyl chloride 1-Chloropropane
n = 4    C4H9Cl CH3CH2CH2CH2Cl n-Butyl chloride 1-Chlorobutane
  1. 62. Aldehydes and Ketones : Aldehydes and Ketones are compounds containing carbonyl () group. In aldehydes, carbon of  group is attached to an alkyl group and a hydrogen atom. In ketones, carbon of carbonyl group is attached to two alkyl groups. The two alkyl groups may be same or different. For example,

or RCHO is an Aldehyde. or RCOR’ is a Ketone

Where R and R’ are different alkyl groups. They can be same also.

Aldehydes are named by replacing -e from the name of alkane by the suffix –al and Ketones are named by replacing –e of alkane by the suffix -one.

Aldehydes : General formula is .

Molecular Formula Structural Formula Common Name IUPAC Name
n = 0    HCHO Formaldehyde Methanal
n = 1    CH3CHO Acetaldehyde Ethanal
n = 2    C2H5CHO Propionaldehyde Propanal
n = 3    C3H7CHO Butyraldehyde Butanal


            Ketones : General formula is

Molecular Formula Structural Formula Common Name IUPAC Name
n = 1   CH3COCH3 Acetone Propanone
n =1, 2 CH3COC2H5 Ethyl methyl ketone Butanone
n = 1,3 CH3COCH2CH2CH3 Methyl propyl ketone Pentanone
n=1,4 CH3COCH2CH2CH2CH3 Butyl methyl ketone Hexanone


  1. Carboxylic acid : The compounds containing carboxyl (– COOH) group are known as carboxylic acids. Carboxylic acids are named by substituting ‘e’ of the corresponding alkane by –oic acid. Their general formula is CnH2n+1–COOH
Molecular Formula Structural Formula Common Name IUPAC Name
n = 0   HCOOH Formic acid methanoic acid
n =1   CH3COOH Acetic acid Ethanoic acid
n = 2  C2H5COOH Propionic acid Propanoic acid
n = 3  C3H7COOH Butyric acid Butanoic acid


  1. Combustion of Carbon: Carbon, in all allotropic forms, burns in presence of oxygen to form carbon dioxide with evolution of heat and light energy. In case of diamond, graphite and fullerene, they burn completely to form CO2 because they are purest form of carbon.

C + O2 ¾® CO2 + Heat + light

Most of the carbon compounds are combustible and burn in presence of oxygen to form CO2 and H2O. e.g.,

CH4(g) + 2O2(g) ®

CO2(g) + 2H2O(l) + heat + light

2H2H6(g) + 7O2(g) ®

4CO2(g) + 6H2O(l) + Heat + light

2CH3OH(g) + 3O2(g) ®

2CO2(g) + 4H2O(l) + heat light

CH3CH2OH(l) + 3O2 ®

2CO2(g) + 3H2O(l) + heat

CH3COOH (l) + 2O2(g) ®

2CO2(g) + 2H2O(l) + heat

  1. Combustion of Hydrocarbons : If hydrocarbons are burnt in limited supply of oxygen then smoky flame is produced due to incomplete combustion whereas in excess of oxygen, complete combustion takes place and non-luminous bluish flame with high temperature is produced.
  2. Oxidising Agent : Those substances which can add oxygen to starting material are called oxidising agents, e.g., alkaline KMnO4 and acidified potassium dichromate
  3. Addition Reactions : Those reactions in which unsaturated compounds react with a molecule like H2, Cl2, etc., to form another saturated compounds are called addition reactions.
  4. Hydrogenation : It is a process in which unsaturated compound reacts with hydrogen in presence of nickel as a catalyst to form saturated compound


  1. Catalyst : It is a substance which increases the rate of reaction without itself undergoing any permanent chemical change, e.g., Ni, Pt, V2O5 are used as catalyst.
  2. Substitution Reactions : Those reaction in which an atom or group of atoms of a compound is replaced by other atom or group of atoms are called substitution reaction.

Saturated hydrocarbons are less reactive and do not react with most reagents.

They react with halogens in presence of sunlight and undergo substitution reaction. The reaction is very fast. It is photochemical reaction because it takes place in presence of sunlight.

CH4(g) + Cl2(g)  + HCl(g) CH3Cl(g)+Cl2(g)+HCl(g)


CJCl3(l)+Cl2(g) +HCl(g)

  1. Test for Unsaturation : Add a few drops of bromine water to a test tube containing ethyne. Shake and observe.

HCºCH + 2Br2(aq) ¾®

  1. Addition of Hydrogen : Ethyne reacts with hydrogen in the presence of a catalyst to give Ethane. Two molecules of hydrogen are added across the carbon-carbon triple bond.

+ 2H2

  1. Addition of Chlorine : Two molecules of chlorine react with ethyne to form 1, 1, 2, 2-tetrachloroethane.

+ 2Cl2 ¾®

  1. Addition of HCl : Ethyne reacts with HCl in the presence of mercuric chloride (HgCl2) to form vinyl chloride which is monomer of polyvinyl chloride (PVC) (used as plastic)

+ HCl

  1. Combustion of Acetylene : Acetylene burns in presence of oxygen to form CO2 and H2O.

+5O2(g) ® 4CO2(g)+2H2O(l) + heat

  1. Uses of Ethyne :

            (i)   Oxy-acetylene flame is used for welding purposes.

(ii)  It is used for lighting purposes

(iii) It is used to prepare Benzene (C6H6)

(iv) It is used for making Vinyl chloride which is used for making PVC (Plastic).

  1. Physical Properties of Ethanol :

            (i)   Pure ethanol is a colourless liquid.

(ii)  It has a specific smell and burning taste

(iii) Its boiling point is 351 K which is higher than corresponding alkanes

(iv) It is soluble in water. i.e., it is miscible with water in all proportions.

  1. Chemical properties of Ethanol :

            (i)   Dehydration : Ethanol. when heated with Conc. H2SO4 at 443 K or Al2O3 at 623 K undergoes dehydration, i.e. loses water molecule to from alkene.

CH2=CH2 + H2O

(ii)  Reaction with Sodium : Alcohols are very weakly acidic. Ethanol reacts with sodium metal to form sodium ethoxide and hydrogen gas


(iii) Oxidation with Chromic anhydride (CrO3) :

(iv) Oxidation with alkaline KMnO4 :

+[O] + H2O

(v)  Oxidation with acidified Potassium dichromate : Ethanol is oxidized to ethanoic acid with the help of acidified K2Cr2O7

+2[O]                                              + H2O

During this reaction, orange colour of K2Cr2O7 changes to green. Therefore, this reaction can be used for the identification of alcohols.

(vi) Esterification : Ethanol reacts with ethanoic acid in presence of concentrated H2SO4 to form ethyl ethanoate and water. The compound formed by the reaction of an alcohol with carboxylic acid is known as ester and the reaction is called Esterification. Esters are sweet fruity smelling compounds because they occur in fruits. They are used in ice creams, cold drinks and perfumes. The reaction takes place as follows.



Conc. H2SO4 acts as dehydrating agent, i.e., it removes water formed otherwise ester formed will get hydrolysed.

(vii) Ethanol is highly inflammable liquid i.e., it catches fire very easily. It burns with blue flame in presence of oxygen to form carbon dioxide and water.


  1. Uses of Ethanol :

            (i)   Ethanol is present in alcoholic beverages such as beer, wine, whisky.

(ii)  Ethanol is used as antiseptic for sterilising wounds.

(iii) Ethanol is used incough syrups. digestive syrups and tonics.

(iv) Ethanol is being mixed with petrol and is used as motor fuel. This mixture is called power alcohol.

(v)  A mixture of ethanol and water has lower freezing point than water. This mixture is known as antifreeze and is used in radiators of vehicles in cold countries and at hill stations.

(vi) Ethanol is used for preparation of chloroform, iodoform, ethanoic acid, ethanal, ethyl ethanoate etc.

(vii) Ethyl alcohol is used as hypnotic (induces

  1. Harmful effects of drinking alcohol :

(i)   If ethanol is mixed with CH3OH (methanol) and consumed, it may cause serious poisoning and loss of eyesight.

(ii)  It causes addiction (habit forming) and mixes with blood. It damages liver if taken regularly in large amount.

(iii) The person loses sense of discrimination under its influence.

(iv) Higher amount of consumption of ethanol leads to loss of body control and consciousness. It may ever cause death.

Therefore, we should not drink alcohol under any circumstances because it leads to wastage of time, wealth and spoils health.

  1. Alcohol as a fuel : Alcohol is added to petrol upto 20%. The mixture is called ‘gasol’. It is a cleaner fuel because it creates less pollution. Alcohol, on combustion, gives CO2 and H2O only
  2. Fermentation : It is a process in which controlled microbial action takes place to give useful products, e.g., Ethanol can be prepared by fermentation of molasses.



2C2H5OH + 2CO2

  1. Ethanoic acid (Acetic acid) CH3COOH : Ethanoic acid is most commonly known as acetic acid. Its dilute solution in water (5-8%) is known as vinegar, which is used for preserving food-sausage, pickles etc.
  2. Physical properties :

            (i)   Ethanoic acid is vinegar smelling liquid. The lower carboxylic acids are liquids whereas higher ones are solids.

(ii)  Ethanoic acid is sour in taste. Other lower carboxylic acids are also sour in taste.

(iii) Ethanoic acid has boiling point 391 K. Carboxylic acids have higher boiling points than corresponding alcohols, aldehydes and ketones.

(iv) Acetic acid is soluble in water, i.e., it is miscible with water in all proportions. The lower carboxylic acids are soluble in water but solubility in water decreases with increase in molecular weight.

(v)  Acetic acid freezes at 290 K. Thus, in cold weather crystallization of acetic acid may take place that is why pure acetic acid is called glacial acetic acid.

  1. Chemical Properties :

(i)   Ethanoic acid is weak acid but it turns blue litmus red.

(ii)  Reaction with Metale. Ethanoic acid reacts with metals like Na, K, Zn etc. to form metal ethanoates and hydrogen gas.



(iii) Reaction with Carbonates. Ethanoic acid reacts with bicarbonates and carbonates and produces brisk effervescence due to formation of carbon dioxide.

+ ¾®

2CH3COONa + CO2 + H2O

CH3COOH + ¾®

+ H2O + CO2

                        (iv) Reaction with Base. Ethanoic acid reacts with sodium hydroxide to form sodium ethanoate and water

+ ¾®


(v)  Decarboxylation (Removal of CO2). When sodium salt of ethanoic acid, i.e., sodium ethanoate is heated with soda lime (3 parts of NaOH and 1 part of CaO), methane gas is formed.


CH4 + Na2CO3

                                    This reaction is known as decarboxylation because a molecule of CO2 is removed from a molecule of acid

(vi) Reaction with alcohols. Ethanoic acid reacts with ethanol in presence of concentrated sulphuric acid to form esters which are pleasant fruity smelling compounds.


+ H2O(l)

(vii) Reduction. Acetic acid, on reduction with lithium aluminium hydride, results in formation of ethanal, which on further reduction gives ethanol.



  1. Uses of Ethanoic acid :

            (i)   It is used for making vinegar

(ii)  It is used as a laboratory reagent

(iii) It is used for preparation of white lead [2PbCO3.Pb(OH)2] which is used in white paints.

(iv) It is used for coagulation of rubber from latex and casein (protein) from milk

(v)  It is used in preparation of acetone, ethyl acetate, acetic anhydride, aspirin which is used in medicines.

(vi) It is used in preparation of cellulose acetate which is used for making photographic film.

(vii) Its esters are used in artificial flavours in perfumes.

(viii) Its 5% solution is bactericidal (destroys bacteria)

(ix) Its compound basic copper acetate (verdigris) is used as green pigment.

(x)  Aluminium acetate and chromium acetate are used as mordants in dyeing and waterproofing of fabrics.

  1. Esters : They are pleasant fruity smelling compounds. They are formed by reaction of carboxylic acids and alcohols. They are used in making ice creams, cold drinks, perfumes and in flavouring agents.
  2. Acidic hydrolysis of Esters : Esters, on hydrolysis in presence of H+ give carboxylic acid and alcohol.

\underset{{Ethyl\ ethanoate}}{\mathop{{C{{H}_{3}}COO{{C}_{2}}{{H}_{5}}}}}\,+\underset{{Water}}{\mathop{{{{H}_{2}}O}}}\,\xrightarrow{{{{H}^{+}}}}\underset{{Ethanoic\ acid}}{\mathop{{C{{H}_{3}}COOH}}}\,+\underset{{Ethanol}}{\mathop{{{{C}_{2}}{{H}_{5}}OH}}}\,

  1. Saponification : It is a process in which an ester reacts with sodium hydroxide to form the sodium salt of acid and alcohol is formed.

\underset{{Ethyl\ ethanoate}}{\mathop{{C{{H}_{3}}COO{{C}_{2}}{{H}_{5}}}}}\,+\underset{{Sodium\ hydroxide}}{\mathop{{NaOH}}}\,\xrightarrow[{}]{{}}\underset{{Sodium\ ethanoate}}{\mathop{{C{{H}_{3}}COONa}}}\,+\underset{{Ethanol}}{\mathop{{{{C}_{2}}{{H}_{5}}OH}}}\,

Saponification is also used for preparation of soap.

  1. Soaps and Synthetic Detergents :

            Soaps : Soaps are sodium or potassium salts of higher fatty acids. Fatty acids are carboxylic acids containing 12 or more carbon atoms, e.g.,

The common fatty acids and their formula are given below :

Table : Some Examples of fatty acids

Formula Name of fatty acid Formula Name of Fatty acid
C15H31COOH Palmitic acid C17H35COOH Stearic acid
C17H33COOH Oleic acid C11H23COOH Lauric acid
C17H31COOH Linoleic acid C13H27COOH Myristic acid
  1. Glycerides : They are esters of glycerol, an alcohol containing three hydroxyl group and fatty acids. Glycerides are present in fats or oils of animal and vegetable origin
  2. Saponification : The process in which oil or fat (glyceride) is hydrolysed with sodium hydroxide to get soap and glycerol is called saponification.
    Other examples of soaps are Sodium palmitate (C15H31COONa), Sodium oleate (C17H33COONa)
    Sodium linoleate (C17H31COONa) etc.

Advantages of Soap

  • Soap is cheaper and readily available.
  • It works well for cleaning of clothes with soft water (water which does not contain Ca2+ and Mg2+)
  • Soaps are 100% biodegradable, i.e., decomposed by micro-organisms present in sewage, therefore, they do not create water pollution.

Disadvantages of Soap

  • It does not work well with hard water containing Ca2+ or Mg2+. It reacts with Ca2+ and Mg2+ to form white precipitate which is called scum and soap goes waste. The reaction which takes place is a follows.
    \underset{\begin{smallmatrix}  (\Pr esent\ in\ \\  Hard\ water)  \end{smallmatrix}}{\mathop{{C{{a}^{{2+}}}}}}\,+\underset{\begin{smallmatrix}  Sodium\ stearate\ \\  (Soap)  \end{smallmatrix}}{\mathop{{2{{C}_{{17}}}{{H}_{{35}}}COONa}}}\,\xrightarrow[{}]{{}}\underset{{Calciumstearate\ }}{\mathop{{{{{({{C}_{{17}}}{{H}_{{35}}}COO)}}_{2}}Ca}}}\,+2N{{a}^{+}}

\underset{\begin{smallmatrix}  (\Pr esent\ in \\  Hard\ water)\  \end{smallmatrix}}{\mathop{{M{{g}^{{2+}}}}}}\,+2{{C}_{{17}}}{{H}_{{35}}}COONa\xrightarrow[{}]{{}}\underset{{Magnesium\ stearate}}{\mathop{{{{{({{C}_{{17}}}{{H}_{{35}}}COO)}}_{2}}Mg}}}\,

Thus, soap solution forms less lather with hard water.

  • Soap is not suitable for washing woolen garments because it is basic in nature and woolen garments have acidic dyes.
  • Soap are less effective in saline water and acidic water.


Detergents are sodium or potassium salts of sulphonic acids of hydrocarbons of alkene type. They have –SO3H group, i.e., sulphonic acid group.

Examples :

  1. Sodium lauryl sulphate: CH3(CH2)10CH2ONa+
  2. Sodium dodecylbenzenesulphonate : C12H25–C6H4 –Na+

Advantages of Detergents over soaps

  1. Detergents work well even with hard water but soaps do not.
  2. Detergents may be used in saline or acidic water
  3. Detergents are more easily soluble in water than soaps.
  4. Detergents can be used for washing woolen garments whereas soaps cannot be used.
  5. Detergents having linear hydrocarbon chains are biodegradable.

Disadvantages of Detergents over Soaps

  1. Synthetic detergents having branched hydrocarbon chain are not fully biodegradable, i.e., they are not decomposed by micro-organisms in sewage and create water pollution.
  2. They are more expensive than soaps. Let us take up the differences between soaps and detergents.

Table: Difference between soaps and detergents

Soaps Detergents
1. They are sodium or potassium salts of fatty acids 1. They are sodium or potassium salts of sulphonic acids.
2. They have –COONa group 2. They have– SO3Na group
3. They do not work well with hard water, acidic water and saline water 3. They work well with hard water, acidic water and saline water.
4. They are fully biodegradable 4. Some detergents having branched hydrocarbon       chain are non-biodegradable
5. They do not work well with woolen garments. 5. They work well with woolen garments
6.It may cause irritation to the skin 6. They do not cause irritation to the skin
7.They take time to dissolve in water 7. They dissolve faster in water
8. Example: Sodium stearate, Sodium palmitate 8. Examples: Sodium lauryl sulphate, sodium dodecylbenzenesulphonate.

Cleansing Actions of Soaps and Detergents

Soaps and detergents consist of a large hydrocarbon taill with a negatively charged head as shown in figures. The hydrocarbon tail is hydrophobic (water-hating or water repelling) and negatively charged head is hydrophilic (water-loving).

In an aqueous solution, water molecules being polar in nature, surround the ions and not the hydrocarbon part of the molecule

When a soap or detergent is dissolved in water, the molecules associate together as clusters called

micelles as shown in figure (C)

cleansing action of soap

cleansing action of detergent

cleansing action of soap

The tails stick inwards and the heads outwards.

In cleansing, the hydrocarbon tail attaches itself to oily dirt. When water is agitated (Shaken vigorously),the oily dirt tends to lift off from the dirty surface and dissociate into fragments.

This gives opportunity to other tails to stick to oil. The solution now contains small globules of oil surround by detergent molecules.

The negatively charged heads present in water prevent the small globules from coming together and form aggregates. Thus, the oily dirt is removed.

In the past, detergents caused pollution in rivers and water bodies. The long carbon chain present in detergents used earlier, contained lot of branching. These branched chain detergent molecules were degraded very slowly by the micro-organims present in sewage discharge septic tanks and water bodies. Thus, the detergents persisted in water for long time and made water unfit for aquatic life. Nowadays, the detergents are made up of molecules in which branching is kept at minimum. These are degraded more easily than branched chain detergents.

Carbon and Its Compounds Important Reactions      


  1. \displaystyle \underset{{Sodium\,\,Acetate}}{\mathop{{C{{H}_{3}}COONa}}}\,+\underset{{Soda\,\,Lime}}{\mathop{{NaOH(CaO)}}}\,\xrightarrow[{}]{{Heat}}\underset{{Methane}}{\mathop{{C{{H}_{4}}}}}\,+N{{a}_{2}}C{{O}_{3}}
  2. \underset{{Ethene}}{\mathop{{C{{H}_{2}}=C{{H}_{2}}}}}\,+{{H}_{2}}O\xrightarrow[{Or\,{{H}_{2}}S{{O}_{4}}}]{{{{H}_{3}}P{{O}_{4}}}}\underset{{Ethanol}}{\mathop{{C{{H}_{3}}-C{{H}_{2}}OH}}}\,


  1. \underset{{Sucrose}}{\mathop{{{{C}_{{12}}}{{H}_{{22}}}{{O}_{{11}}}}}}\,+\underset{{(Yeast)}}{\mathop{{{{H}_{2}}O\xrightarrow{{Invertase}}}}}\,\underset{{Glu\cos e}}{\mathop{{{{C}_{6}}{{H}_{{12}}}{{O}_{6}}}}}\,+\underset{{Fructose}}{\mathop{{{{C}_{6}}{{H}_{{12}}}{{O}_{6}}}}}\,
  2. \underset{{Glu\cos e}}{\mathop{{{{C}_{6}}{{H}_{{12}}}{{O}_{6}}}}}\,\underset{{(Yeast)}}{\mathop{{\xrightarrow{{Zymase}}}}}\,\underset{{Ethanol}}{\mathop{{2{{C}_{2}}{{H}_{5}}OH}}}\,+2C{{O}_{2}}
  3. \underset{{Starch}}{\mathop{{2{{{({{C}_{2}}{{H}_{{10}}}{{O}_{5}})}}_{n}}}}}\,+n{{H}_{2}}O~~~\underset{{}}{\mathop{{\xrightarrow{{Diastase}}}}}\,\underset{{Maltose}}{\mathop{{n{{C}_{{12}}}{{H}_{{22}}}{{O}_{{11}}}}}}\,
  4. \underset{{Maltose}}{\mathop{{{{C}_{{12}}}{{H}_{{22}}}{{O}_{{11}}}}}}\,+{{H}_{2}}O\underset{{(Yeast)}}{\mathop{{\xrightarrow{{Maltase}}}}}\,\underset{{Glu\cos e}}{\mathop{{2{{C}_{6}}{{H}_{{12}}}{{O}_{6}}}}}\,
  5. \displaystyle {{C}_{6}}{{H}_{{12}}}{{O}_{6}}\underset{{(Yeast)}}{\mathop{{\xrightarrow{{Zymase}}}}}\,2{{C}_{2}}{{H}_{5}}OH+2C{{O}_{2}}
  6. \underset{{Methanol}}{\mathop{{2C{{H}_{3}}OH}}}\,+2Na\xrightarrow[{}]{{}}\underset{{SodiumMethoxide}}{\mathop{{2C{{H}_{3}}ONa}}}\,+{{H}_{2}}
  7. \underset{{Ethanol}}{\mathop{{2{{C}_{2}}{{H}_{5}}OH}}}\,+2Na\xrightarrow[{}]{{}}\underset{{Sodium\ ethoxide}}{\mathop{{2{{C}_{2}}{{H}_{5}}ONa}}}\,+{{H}_{2}}

Combustion :

  1. 2CH3OH + 3O2 → 2CO2 + 4H2O
  2. C2H5OH + 3O→ 2CO2 + 3H2O

Esterification :

  1. \underset{{Ethanoic\ acid}}{\mathop{{C{{H}_{3}}COOH}}}\,+\underset{{Ethanol}}{\mathop{{{{C}_{2}}{{H}_{5}}OH}}}\,\underset{{}}{\mathop{{\xrightarrow{{Conc.{{H}_{2}}S{{O}_{4}}}}}}}\,\underset{{Ethyl\ ethanoate}}{\mathop{{C{{H}_{3}}COO{{C}_{2}}{{H}_{5}}}}}\,+{{H}_{2}}O
  2. \underset{{Ethanoic\ acid}}{\mathop{{C{{H}_{3}}COOH}}}\,+\underset{{Methanol}}{\mathop{{C{{H}_{3}}OH}}}\,\underset{{}}{\mathop{{\xrightarrow{{Conc.{{H}_{2}}S{{O}_{4}}}}}}}\,\underset{{Methyl\ ethanoate}}{\mathop{{C{{H}_{3}}COOC{{H}_{3}}}}}\,+{{H}_{2}}O
  3. \underset{{Ethanol}}{\mathop{{C{{H}_{3}}C{{H}_{2}}OH}}}\,\overset{{[O]}}{\mathop{{\xrightarrow[{Conc.\ {{K}_{2}}C{{r}_{2}}{{O}_{7}}/{{H}_{2}}S{{O}_{4}}}]{}}}}\,\underset{{Ethanoic\ acid}}{\mathop{{C{{H}_{3}}COOH}}}\,
  4. \displaystyle \underset{{Ethyl\ alcohol}}{\mathop{{C{{H}_{3}}C{{H}_{2}}OH}}}\,+{{O}_{2}}\xrightarrow[{}]{{}}\underset{{Acetic\ acid}}{\mathop{{C{{H}_{3}}COOH}}}\,+{{H}_{2}}O
  5. \displaystyle \underset{{Ethanoic\ acid}}{\mathop{{C{{H}_{3}}COOH}}}\,+\underset{{Sodium\ bicarbonate}}{\mathop{{NaHC{{O}_{3}}}}}\,\xrightarrow[{}]{{}}\underset{{Sodium\ acetate}}{\mathop{{C{{H}_{3}}COONa}}}\,+{{H}_{2}}O+C{{O}_{2}}
  6. \underset{{Ethanol}}{\mathop{{C{{H}_{3}}C{{H}_{2}}OH}}}\,\underset{{C{{H}_{3}}COOH}}{\mathop{{\xrightarrow{{Cr{{O}_{3}}\ in}}}}}\,\underset{{Ethanol}}{\mathop{{C{{H}_{3}}CHO}}}\,+{{H}_{2}}O
  7. \displaystyle C{{H}_{3}}C{{H}_{2}}OH+2[O]\underset{{}}{\mathop{{\xrightarrow{{Alkaline\ KMn{{O}_{4}}}}}}}\,C{{H}_{3}}COOH+{{H}_{2}}O
  8. \underset{{Ethyl\ ethanoate}}{\mathop{{C{{H}_{3}}COO{{C}_{2}}{{H}_{5}}}}}\,+NaOH\xrightarrow[{}]{{}}C{{H}_{3}}COONa+{{C}_{2}}{{H}_{5}}OH
  9. \displaystyle 2C{{H}_{3}}OH+{{O}_{2}}\underset{{Mo{{O}_{3}}}}{\mathop{{\xrightarrow{{873-923K}}}}}\,\underset{{Methanal}}{\mathop{{2HCHO}}}\,+2{{H}_{2}}O
  10. important chemical reaction
  11. \underset{{Methanol}}{\mathop{{C{{H}_{3}}OH}}}\,+CO\underset{{}}{\mathop{{\xrightarrow{{{{I}_{2}}/Rh}}}}}\,\underset{{Ethanoic\ acid}}{\mathop{{C{{H}_{3}}COOH}}}\,
  12. 2CH3COOH      +   2Na           →  2CH3COONa              +          H2
  13. 2CH3COOH      +   Na2CO3     →  2CH3COONa              +          H2O      +    CO2


  1. Saponification
  2. \displaystyle {{C}_{2}}{{H}_{5}}OH\underset{{or\ A{{l}_{2}}{{O}_{3}},\ 623K}}{\mathop{{\xrightarrow{{Conc.\ {{H}_{2}}S{{O}_{4}},\ 443K}}}}}\,C{{H}_{2}}=\text{ }C{{H}_{2}}+\text{ }{{H}_{2}}O
  3. \underset{{Ethanoic\ acid}}{\mathop{{C{{H}_{3}}COOH}}}\,\underset{{or\ NaB{{H}_{4}}}}{\mathop{{\xrightarrow{{LiAl{{H}_{4}}}}}}}\,\underset{{Ethanal}}{\mathop{{C{{H}_{3}}CHO}}}\,\underset{{or\ LiAl{{H}_{4}}}}{\mathop{{\xrightarrow{{NaB{{H}_{4}}}}}}}\,\underset{{Ethanol}}{\mathop{{C{{H}_{3}}C{{H}_{2}}OH}}}\,

Addition Reaction

  1. \displaystyle C{{H}_{2}}=\text{ }C{{H}_{2}}+B{{r}_{2}}\left( {aq} \right)\xrightarrow[{}]{{}}\underset{{1,2-Dibromoethane}}{\mathop{{BrC{{H}_{2}}C{{H}_{2}}Br}}}\,
  2. \displaystyle C{{H}_{3}}OH+2[O]\underset{{}}{\mathop{{\xrightarrow{{Cr{{O}_{3}}}}}}}\,\underset{{Methanoic\ acid}}{\mathop{{HCOOH}}}\,+{{H}_{2}}O

Important Points of Carbon and Its Compounds

  • Carbon always forms covalent bonds.
  • Carbon is present in all substances of animal and vegetable origin
  • The ability of carbon to unite with an indefinite number of carbon atoms in straight, branched or cyclic chains is known as catenation.
  • Caron and hydrogen combine together in different proportions to form a large number of compounds called hydrocarbons.
  • There are two types of hydrocarbons-saturated and unsaturated
  • Alkanes are represented by the general formula CnH2n +2
  • Alkenes are represented by the general formula CnH2n
  • Alkynes are represented by the general formula CnH2n–2
  • Organic compounds having the same functional group and common properties but differing in molecular formula from the next member by one CH2 group, form a homologous series and such compounds are called homologues.
  • Compounds with the same molecular formula but different structural formulae are known as isomers.
  • The decomposition of alkanes on heating in the absence of oxygen is known as cracking.
  • Methane is prepared by heating a mixture of sodium acetate and soda lime.
  • When ethanol is heated with an excess of concentrated sulphuric acid at 160°C, ethene gas is produced.
  • Natural gas is a mixture of gaseous hydrocarbons, mainly methane, ethane, propane and butane.
  • Compressed Natural Gas (CNG) is used as an alternative to petrol as automobile fuel.
  • Natural gas is a rich source of hydrogen gas which is required for the manufacture of fertilizers
  • Liquefied Petroleum Gas (LPG) is used as a domestic fuel.
  • Petrol is a complex mixture of hydrocarbons such as hexane, heptane and octane.
  • Petrol is used as a motor fuel.
  • Alcohols are organic compounds which contain hydroxyl group (–OH) bonded to a carbon atom.
  • Alcohols are neutral to litmus.
  • Alcohols are poor conductors of electricity.
  • Alcohol reacts with sodium to liberate hydrogen gas.
  • Ethanol is a constituent of beverages, like wine and beer.
  • Ethanol is used as a hypnotic and is highly addictive.
  • Organic compounds containing carboxyl group (–COOH) are called carboxylic acids.
  • Ethanoic acid reacts with sodium carbonate to produce carbon dioxide gas.
  • A dilute aqueous solution 4 – 6% of ethanoic acid is called vinegar
  • A 99% pure solution of acetic acid is called glacial acetic acid.
  • A soap is a sodium or potassium salt of a long-chain carboxylic acid. Sodium palmitate, sodium stearate, etc., are examples of soaps.
  • The process of splitting fats or oils using alkalis is called saponification.
  • Soaps do not work well with hard water, but synthetic detergents do.
  • Soaps are biodegradable, but synthetic detergents are not.

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