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Ethane Formula – Structure, Properties, Uses, Sample Questions

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  • Last Updated : 18 Apr, 2022

Carbon is special in its compound properties since it shapes various parts more prevalent than the absolute expansion of the relative multitude of different components in the mix with one another. The greatest gathering of this large number of parts is the one shaped via carbon and hydrogen. We know at least around 1 million natural parts and this number increments quickly consistently. Albeit the grouping isn’t severe, carbon shapes one more series of mixtures considered inorganic, in a much lower number than that of the natural mixtures.

Basic carbon exists in two distinct allotropic translucent structures: jewel and graphite. Different structures with little crystallinity are vegetal carbon and dark smoke. Synthetically unadulterated carbon can be ready by termic deterioration of sugar (sucrose) without any air. The physical and substance properties of carbon rely upon the glass-like construction of the component.

Ethane

It is the second individual from the homologous series of alkanes. It very well might be viewed as gotten from methane by supplanting one H molecule with a methyl group and may hence be named methyl methane. Being comprised of two methyl groups. CH3CH3, it could be called dimethyl. It dissolves in the regular mineral oil and is developed into a vaporous state when the oil rises to the top. Natural gas contains little amounts (10-21 %) of ethane alongside methane. To a little degree, it is additionally present in coal gas and in ‘cracked petroleum’.

Based on arrangement naming is additionally done and as it is realized that naming is as indicated by the IUPAC nomenclature since it is a standard set in science. This IUPAC standard is utilized all over the place. In like manner, as there are single bonds present between the carbon atoms along these lines the suffix “ane” is utilized, and as there are two carbon particles accordingly prefix “eth” is utilized which totally makes it ethane, and its equation becomes C2H6.

Structure of Ethane

Since isomerism in hydrocarbons relies upon the various structures of the carbon chains, the number of isomeric types of a specific hydrocarbon can be worked out by developing the conceivable carbon chains of that hydrocarbon. Beginning from the principal hydrocarbon methane which contains just a single carbon atom(C), the chain of ethane can be developed in a straightforward manner by adding to it another carbon molecule (C-C).

 

Preparation of Ethane

For the removal of various impurities, oil and natural gas should be handled at first creation. The handling of natural gas eliminates hydrocarbons, for example, ethane, butane, propane, and different hydrocarbons from the gas stream, as well as water and different impurities.

  • Ethane is likewise ready by Wurtz reaction. Whenever methyl bromide or methyl iodide and sodium are warmed within the sight of dry ether ethane is formed. 

CH3I + 2Na + CH3I → CH3-CH + 2NaI      

  • Pure ethane is obtained in the laboratory by the reduction of ethyl iodide with zinc-copper couple and ethanol mixed with about 5 per cent water.

CH3CH2I + 2[H] → C2H6 + HI    

  • Bypassing a mixture of ethylene and hydrogen overheated nickel (Sabatier and Sendet’ens).

CH2 = CH2 + H2   → C2H6   

  • Preparation of ethane from sodium propionate. When sodium propanoate reacts with soda lime ethane is obtained.       Here we are talking about the soda-lime so we must know that soda lime is a mixture of NaOH and CaO.

CH3CH2COONa + NaOH → C2H6 + Na2CO3

Physical Properties of Ethane

  • Ethane is a colorless and odorless gas at customary temperature.
  • The nature of the compound is Saturated compound.
  • It tends to be more handily condensed than methane. Fluid ethane boils at – 88.3°C and solidifies at – 172°C. It is sparingly soluble in water however breaks down promptly in ethanol.
  • The molar mass of ethane it is 30.070g/mol.
  • Then, at that point, the thickness of ethane is 1.3562kg/m3 when the gas is at 0°C. Further when the fluid is at – 88.5°C the thickness must be 544.0kg/m3.
  • The liquefying point of ethane is – 182.8°C(- 297.0°F)
  • The edge of boiling over of ethane is – 88°C (- 127.3°F)
  • The fume tension of ethane is 3.8453MPa.

Chemical Properties of Ethane

In its chemical behavior ethane closely resembles methane,

  • Stability: It is extremely stable to most reagents. Thus strong oxidizing agents like potassium permanganate and chromic acid, alkalis, concentrated nitric and sulphuric acids have no action on ethane.
  • Halogenation: Ethane reacts with chlorine in diffused daylight when all the 6 “H” atoms are replaced in turn by chlorine atoms yielding a mixture of various chloro- derivatives. 

CH3.CH3 + Cl → CH3.CH2Cl            

CH3.CH2Cl + Cl → CH2Cl.CH2Cl + HCl → CH3CHCl2 + HCl

  • Nitration: Ethane reacts with nitric acid vapor at 400°C to form nitroethane. 

C2H6 + HONO → C2H5NO + H2

Some nitromethane is also produced by cleavage of the carbon bonds at elevated temperatures.

  • Oxidation: Ethane burns in air or oxygen with a slightly luminous flame, yielding carbon dioxide and water. 

2C2H6 + 7O2 → 4CO2 + 6H2O + 736.8 Cals 

Uses/Applications of Ethane

  • Ethane is primarily used as the raw material for the production of ethylene for everything from antifreeze to further production of plastics, fruit ripening, and detergent making.
  • Used in the preparation of ethanol, acetaldehyde, and acetic acid which find use in paints, varnishes, adhesive, plastic, etc
  • In scientific research, it is used in liquid form for vitrifying water-rich materials.
  • Used in the petrochemical industry as a fraction of that produced in the natural gas liquids plants as liquefied for use as fuel for automobiles.
  • It is also used to form ethyl chloride which is used to make tetraethyl lead.
  • Used as the most specific volatile marker for the investigation of lipid peroxidation. So, these are some of the basic or we can say common uses of ethane.    

Conclusion

As we have discussed so much about ethane then we should know its common name which is dimethyl as it has two methyl groups present. Also in everyday life, we must have listened to the ethane gas then what is it? It is the ethane itself as we have already discussed that ethane is a colorless, odorless, and compressible gas.

Sample Questions

Question 1: How is the naming done according to IUPAC nomenclature?

Answer: 

Based on arrangement naming is additionally done and as it is realized that naming is as indicated by the IUPAC nomenclature since it is standard set in science. This IUPAC standard is utilized all over the place. In like manner to this, as there are single bonds present between the carbon atoms along these lines the suffix “ane” is utilized and as there are two carbon particles accordingly prefix “eth” is utilized which totally makes it ethane, and its equation becomes C2H6.

Question 2: Can ethane be classified as a hydrocarbon?

Answer: 

Many homes nowadays make use of natural gas as fuel for warming up our homes and for cooking. There are actually several gases present in natural gas, and ethane has the second largest percentage in natural gas. Ethane is a colorless, odorless, and flammable gas with a chemical formula of C2H6; it has two carbon (C) atoms and six hydrogen (H) atoms. It’s only composed of carbon and hydrogen atoms, so it is classified as a hydrocarbon. The two carbon atoms are bonded together and there are three hydrogen atoms attached to each carbon atom. All of the bonds that we see here are single bonds. For this reason, ethane is classified as an alkane. An alkane is a chemical compound that consists of hydrogen and carbon atoms and is only made of single bonds.

Question 3: What are the uses of ethane?

Answer: 

The uses of ethane are as follows: Ethane is primarily used as the raw material for the production of ethylene for further production of plastics, fruit ripening and detergent making scientific research, it is used in liquid form for vitrifying water-rich materials can also be used for producing ethyl alcohol, acetic acids or other similar organic compounds can also be liquefied for use as fuel for automobiles.

Question 4: How is ethane produced?

Answer: 

For the removal of various impurities, oil and natural gas must be processed at first production. The processing of natural gas removes hydrocarbons such as ethane, butane, propane and other hydrocarbons from the gas stream, as well as water and other impurities.

  • Ethane is also prepared by Wurtz reaction. When methyl bromide or methyl iodide and sodium are heated in the presence of dry ether ethane is formed.
  • Ethane is synthesized by reduction of ethyl iodide using zinc + copper couple in alcohol.

Question 5: What happens when ethane reacts with halogens?

Answer: 

Ethane reacts with chlorine in diffused daylight when all the 6 “H” atoms are replaced in turn by chlorine atoms yielding a mixture of various chloro- derivatives.      

CH3.CH3 + Cl2 → CH3.CH2Cl

CH3.CH2Cl + Cl2 → CH2Cl.CH2Cl + HCl → CH3CHCl2 + HCl  

Question 6: How to prepare Ethane from Potassium acetate?

Answer: 

Ethane can also be prepared conveniently by the electrolysis of a concentrated solution of potassium acetate.

2CH3COOK → C2H6 + 2CO2 + 2K


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