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Introductory Organic Chemistry - Lecture 37

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Lecture 37 - Potential Energy Surfaces, Transition State Theory

After discussing the statistical basis of the law of mass action, the lecture turns to developing a framework for understanding reaction rates. A potential energy surface that associates energy with polyatomic geometry can be realized physically for a linear, triatomic system, but it is more practical to use collective energies for starting material, transition state, and product, together with Eyring theory, to predict rates. Free-radical chain halogenation provides examples of predicting reaction equilibria and rates from bond dissociation energies. The lecture concludes with a summary of the semester's topics from the perspective of physical-organic chemistry.

Prof. J. Michael McBride
CHEM 125: Freshman Organic Chemistry, Fall 2008
(Yale University: Open Yale)
Date accessed: 2009-11-11
License: Creative Commons BY-NC-SA

Lecture Material

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