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    How did you find your first year of your chemistry degree? If you don't mind me asking... I'm pretty overwhelmed with it, and starting to struggle with all the work and new concepts we have to learn.
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    (Original post by hidden088)
    How did you find your first year of your chemistry degree? If you don't mind me asking... I'm pretty overwhelmed with it, and starting to struggle with all the work and new concepts we have to learn.
    Where are you at? It's going to depend on the course structure but I found mine pretty easy going for the first term at least then the pace picked up a bit for the second and third terms. I'm sure as soon as the concepts have sunk in it'll get less stressful (just like A-levels)
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    (Original post by hidden088)
    How did you find your first year of your chemistry degree? If you don't mind me asking... I'm pretty overwhelmed with it, and starting to struggle with all the work and new concepts we have to learn.
    I found the first week overwhelming and hard too, mainly because 1. we haven't been doing any work for 3-4 months or so, and 2. your thrown deep into concepts you haven't met before that are presented to you in a totally new way. (I think many feel like this, its mainly why half my chemistry class felt like just quitting after only a few days) But things seem to be slowly coming together. As eier has said above, once you get a grasp of the concepts things become alot less stressful - I thought it was the end of the world when I met orbital hybridization and molecular orbitals, now I'm wondering why I even made a big deal about it, it's pretty straight forward stuff now (at first year level anyway, I wouldn't know about higher years).

    Are there no chemistry mentors that you can talk to for help or perhaps join/setup a study group with some friends to help each other as no doubt you will all understand something that the next doesn't
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    Thanks cptbigt for the advice. A study group sounds like a good idea, I just get embarassed when I don't understand something and don't like asking for help as i'm doing a chemistry degree and feel like I 'should know this, else why am I here'
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    (Original post by hidden088)
    Thanks cptbigt for the advice. A study group sounds like a good idea, I just get embarassed when I don't understand something and don't like asking for help as i'm doing a chemistry degree and feel like I 'should know this, else why am I here'
    Don't think like that, after all, your here to learn. Your not here just to do work and exams on stuff that you already know. I'm sure your lecturer's, friends, whoever, wouldn't think less of you for asking for help. No-one expects you to know everything, if you did know everything, then why would you be at uni?

    I feel like you do sometimes, and feel stupid for having to ask so many questions of people (and bug eiervonsatan alot ) but if you don't ask, then your never really going to learn it properly.
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    Back to this reaction that your doing, I'm curious to how this actually happens. Can anyone explain a reaction mechanism or how it goes from trans to cis (or vice versa). Never encountered this before and just interested
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    (Original post by cptbigt)
    Back to this reaction that your doing, I'm curious to how this actually happens. Can anyone explain a reaction mechanism or how it goes from trans to cis (or vice versa). Never encountered this before and just interested
    It's just a thermal isomerisation - breaking the double bond with heat allowing free rotation and hence a mix of geometic isomers. Iodine acts as a catalyst - somehow weakens the double bond (possibly through a iodocation?)
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    (Original post by EierVonSatan)
    It's just a thermal isomerisation - breaking the double bond with heat allowing free rotation and hence a mix of geometic isomers. Iodine acts as a catalyst - somehow weakens the double bond (possibly through a iodocation?)
    Yeah was that's what I was thinking, I just wasn't sure how the iodine played a role in breaking/weakening the bond.
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    (Original post by cptbigt)
    Yeah was that's what I was thinking, I just wasn't sure how the iodine played a role in breaking/weakening the bond.
    After a brief search through the literature it appears it goes through a radical mechanism to break the double bond
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    (Original post by EierVonSatan)
    After a brief search through the literature it appears it goes through a radical mechanism to break the double bond
    Beat me to it Was just looking it up, saw that its a radical addition reaction, radical attacks the double bond which then forms a rotatable single bond, then the radicals recombine and the new isomer is formed.
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    So the homolytic fission of the iodine just occurs with the heating? I thought it required UV light.

    And...

    The iodine radical is attacked by the double bond....forms carbon radical, breaks the double bond and iodine bonds to it...but then how does the iodine leave the the compound to recombine with another radical and reform the double bond?
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    (Original post by cptbigt)
    So the homolytic fission of the iodine just occurs with the heating? I thought it required UV light.
    I think normal light is sufficient.
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    (Original post by EierVonSatan)
    I think normal light is sufficient.
    Sorry edited the post while you were posting again
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    (Original post by cptbigt)
    The iodine radical is attacked by the double bond....forms carbon radical, breaks the double bond and iodine bonds to it...but then how does the iodine leave the the compound to recombine with another radical and reform the double bond?
    The iodine radical attacks the double bond, forms carbon radical, rotates, carbon radical reforms double bond/kicks out iodine radical
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    (Original post by EierVonSatan)
    The iodine radical attacks the double bond, forms carbon radical, rotates, carbon radical reforms double bond/kicks out iodine radical
    So can the iodine radical attack from below or above? This is what determines which isomer is produced? Sorry for another question, just randomly interested in this
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    (Original post by cptbigt)
    So can the iodine radical attack from below or above? This is what determines which isomer is produced? Sorry for another question, just randomly interested in this
    Attack from below or above is the same (there are no stereogenic centres to worry about). Thermodynamically the trans isomer is favoured.
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    (Original post by EierVonSatan)
    Where are you at? It's going to depend on the course structure but I found mine pretty easy going for the first term at least then the pace picked up a bit for the second and third terms. I'm sure as soon as the concepts have sunk in it'll get less stressful (just like A-levels)
    I like your name. Sorry for being off-topic.
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    (Original post by whitepearlbaby)
    I like your name. Sorry for being off-topic.
    Danke
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    (Original post by EierVonSatan)
    Attack from below or above is the same (there are no stereogenic centres to worry about). Thermodynamically the trans isomer is favoured.
    Ah ok, thanks for the explanations
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    Drew (incredibly bad) mechanism for it...probably wrong but just wanted to have a go
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