Organic Chemistry

Organic Chemistry

About Organic Chemistry

Organic chemistry is a subdiscipline within chemistry involving the scientific study of the structure, properties, composition, reactions, and preparation (by synthesis or by other means) of carbon-based compounds, hydrocarbons, and their derivatives. These compounds may contain any number of other elements, including hydrogen, nitrogen, oxygen, the halogens as well as phosphorus, silicon, and sulfur. Organic compounds form the basis of all earthly life. They are structurally diverse. The range of application of organic compounds is enormous. They either form the basis of, or are important constituents of, many products including plastics, drugs, petrochemicals, food, explosive material, and paints. Before the nineteenth century, chemists generally believed that compounds obtained from living organisms were too complex to be synthesized. According to the concept of vitalism, organic matter was endowed with a 'vital force'.

Contributions by LouisBB, V8rik, and DMacks.

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