What is alpha and beta Hydrogen and alpha and beta Carbon?

Asked by Awais Rauf | 24th Nov, 2012, 12:44: AM

Expert Answer:

The terms alpha and beta hydrogen are generally used in long chain compounds with a functional group

For example take CH3CH2CH2CH2COOH. (pentanoic acid)

We number the carbon atoms from the right. The carbon with the functional group (i.e. COOH) is the first carbon atom the one left to it is the second one and so on..... (In this example there are five carbon atoms)..

Now, the second carbon atom(from the right) is the alpha carbon atom and the hydrogen atoms attached to it are the alpha hydrogen atoms. Similarly the third carbon atom (from the right) is the beta carbon atom and the hydrogen atoms attached to this carbon atom are the beta hydrogen atoms.

Carbon next to functional group is known as ?-C and next to that ?, then ?  then?. Hydrogen on ?-C is known as ?-H and on ?-C is known as ?-H.

Answered by  | 24th Nov, 2012, 09:06: PM

Queries asked on Sunday & after 7pm from Monday to Saturday will be answered after 12pm the next working day.