Chemical Compounds - Halides

Halides, or organohalogens, are the group of compounds that contain a halogen atom (fluorine, chlorine, bromine, or iodine) bonded to a carbon atom. All halogen atoms are more electronegative than carbon, so the halides contain polar bonds. The slightly positive charge that exists on the carbon atom in carbon-halogen bonds is the source of the reactivity exhibited by halides. Although organic halides are not common in nature, they are widely used by chemists for transforming and
synthesizing organic molecules. Some examples are shown here.

Carbon tetrachloride was once widely used as a dry-cleaning liquid, but its adverse health effects have curtailed its use. Trichlorofluoromethane, commonly known as Freon 11, was for a time utilized extensively as a refrigerant and aerosol propellant. Its production has been halted because of its role in the destruction of atmospheric ozone. One of the structural arrangements of benzene hexachloride, known as lindane, is an effective insecticide.

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Updated: 2/9/98