Chemical Compound: Definition, Structure, and Examples

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What is Chemical Compound?

Chemical compound is the one that is made up of various elements that are bounded with chemical bonds is called as Chemical compound. It is said that all compounds are substances but not every substance is a compound, as pure compounds are also made up of chemical substance. Substance can be defined as those which are made up of various elements having different composition and properties. A substance made from only a single atom is called as a chemical element.

Compound is formed from the element, when elements are linked to each other by a chemical bond. For example, sodium and chlorine come together to form sodium chloride. Thus, in this case it is an allotrope but not a chemical compound. Another example is diamond. Elements such as NaCl, carbon dioxide, water are naturally combined elements. These elements are produced due to the nucleosynthesis such as supernovas nucleosynthesis, stellar nucleosynthesis and others.

Compound Definition

The word compound originates from a Latin word where “com” means together and “ ponere” means to put. The word compound has various meaning in various fields. In zoology it means, various organism when come together to form a colony is called as a compound. Compound also means when two or more elements combine together is called as compound. In botany, when all the parts of a plant come together to form a leaf or a fruit from the ovaries, is called as a compound leaf or a fruit.

Chemical Compound Characteristic

For the formation of a compound, the number of atoms are proposed by the chemical formula. The element is specified with the symbol and the number of atoms is indicated by the subscript. The atoms are binded to each other by the bond between them. These bonds are of 4 types: Hydrogen bond, Ionic bond, Covalent bond and Metallic bond.

The transfer of electrons from one atom to other is called as Ionic bond. Positively charged ions are the cations and the negatively charged ions are called as anions. Between the anions and the cations exists an electrostatic attraction.

Example of ionic compound are NaCl, where Cl is the anion and Na+ is the cation. Base consist of OH ions, whereas the H+ are the acidic ions. Salt is formed when acid and base reacts with each other. Sharing of electrons between the atoms is called as Covalent bond.

For example in the water molecule, the oxygen atom is shared by two hydrogen atoms, having covalent bond. The bond is of single type when, shared between two electrons. Between two elements 4 electrons being shared is called as double bond. As it is double bonded, one bond is sigma and the other is pi bond. When six electrons are being shared it is called as triple bond, with two pi bond and one sigma bond.

Out of three bond, triple bond is the strongest whereas the single bond is the weakest. In hydrogen bond, a bridge is formed between two atoms, which requires less energy. It is a type of electrostatic bond. In hydrogen bond, a polar hydrogen atom interacts with a polar electronegative atom. In simple words the electronegative atom is attracted by the hydrogen atom.

The DNA and protein secondary and tertiary structure are formed by hydrogen bonds. Although hydrogen bond is weak. Another bond is the metallic bond where, positively charged metal ions and electrons undergo a bonding. Through the metallic bond, intermetallic compounds are formed.

Organic vs Inorganic Compound

Compounds possessing carbon atom is called as Organic compound; whereas the one not containing carbon atoms are called as Inorganic compound. Example of organic compounds are living things. Example lipid, protein, nucleic acid and others. Thus, these compounds when they decompose are broken into smaller fragments. Organic compounds are also secreted by humans, which also is a part of the surrounding environment such as soil. This further serves as a nutrition source to other organism when it reaches water.

Chemical Compound in Biology

When various parts forms material it is called as Compound. From the compound leaf forms the leaflets. Fruits is said to be compound if it is formed from the ovaries.

Chemical Compound Citations


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