What is the chemical structure of soap.

2 Answers

william1941's profile pic

william1941 | College Teacher | (Level 3) Valedictorian

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Soaps consist of molecules one end of which is hydrophilic or is attracted to water. The other end is hydrophobic or is repelled by water and instead is attracted to oil. We cannot clean oil with plain water as oil is not soluble in water. The soap forms a link between the oil droplets and water and allows oil to be cleaned.

Soaps are created as soluble salts of sodium potassium and carboxylic acids. The most widely used salt is a sodium stearate.  This has the property that it dissolves in water and forms ions of sodium and stearate.  The stearate ion is mostly made of hydrocarbon but it dissolves in water due to a carboxylate group it has.  The carboxylate end is the called hydrophilic end, and the hydrocarbon tail is the hydrophobic end.

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buro | Student, Grade 10 | (Level 3) eNoter

Posted on

Soaps are the potassium or calcium salts of the fatti acids having high molecular weight (such as: pamitic acid,stearic acid ,oleic acid etc.)

they are called potassium or calcium pamitate or stearate etc.

SUCH AS: sodium stearate