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    Why are tertiary alcohols more reactive than secondary or primary (why do they react fastest with water)
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    (Original post by jsmith6131)
    Why are tertiary alcohols more reactive than secondary or primary (why do they react fastest with water)
    They form stable tertiary carbocation intermediates. These are more stable than primary or secondary because of the inductive effect.
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    They generally come from alcohols with methyl groups attached, so these groups tend to 'break off' more easily, hence a more reactive molecule.
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    the intermediate they form is a tertiary carbocation; there are more carbons around it to donate some of their -ve charge making the ion more stable than primary or secondary carbocations.
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    then that should mean it is slowest to react as it does not mind being in the intermediate stage

    ??????????????
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    (Original post by jsmith6131)
    then that should mean it is slowest to react as it does not mind being in the intermediate stage

    ??????????????
    No, it means the intermediate stage is more likely to form and then react because it's an Sn1 reaction, where you have to form the intermediate. Sn2 reactions can go via primary and secondary alcohols, for example reaction with HBr because it's one step and no intermediate is formed.
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    so the SN1 mechanism is faster then??
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    Not necessarily. It means it's a first order reaction. I.e. The rate of the reaction only depends on one variable, but it could still be a slow reaction. That's probably all the reaction kinetics knowledge you need for that level of organic chemistry. If you want to work out the rate of the reaction take a look at a physical chemistry textbook. Or the Wikipedia article on reaction kinetics is probably quite good.
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    (Original post by jsmith6131)
    then that should mean it is slowest to react as it does not mind being in the intermediate stage

    ??????????????
    No it means it would rather form that intermediate so that reaction is more likely to happen than the ones with other intermediates, so on a large scale that reaction will be faster.
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    Can some one diagram why it's more reactive, because I'm so confused 😁 what is the inductive effect?
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    Inductive effect is an increase in stability due to electron donation from surrounding alkyl groups.
    In this particular reaction, the SN1 mechanism is most likely as the inductive effect will be greatest (tertiary alcohol, three alkyls attached to the central carbon) thus producing a stable carbocation intermediate.

    Though this mechanism is a two-step process, the rate-limiting step can be 'sped up' by an increase in temperature; increasing the collision rate of the substrate.
    Also, SN1 is likely to predominate due to steric hinderance - meaning reaction via SN2 is unlikely.
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    Lol are tertiary alcohols halal?
 
 
 
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