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How does the molecule arrangement of camphor (covalent) compare to that of Salt...

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sasuke24 | Student, Undergraduate | Honors

Posted March 19, 2013 at 10:51 PM via web

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How does the molecule arrangement of camphor (covalent) compare to that of Salt (ionic)? What is the difference when Camphor (covalent) is heated compared to when Sodium Chloride (ionic) is heated (in terms of how the molecules would look)?  

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ncchemist | eNotes Employee

Posted March 20, 2013 at 2:52 AM (Answer #1)

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Camphor has a the chemical formula C10H16O.  It is an organic molecule in a family called terpenoids.  It is composed entirely of covalent bonds.  It is mostly a compact hydrocarbon with a single carbonyl group.  At room temperature it is a soft, waxy solid with a low melting point.  Salt is sodium chloride (NaCl).  It is an ionic solid with no covalent bonds.  It consists only of the cation Na+ and the anion Cl-.  It is a white solid with an extremely high melting point.  If you heated both chemicals, the camphor would melt into an oily liquid with very little heat.  Salt would remain a white solid for a very long time until over 1000 degrees C at which time it would melt into a molten liquid.

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