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Problem: cis-2-Butene isomerizes to trans-2-butene via the following reaction .If the energy for isomerization came from light, what minimum frequency of light would be required?

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We can look up the bond energy for a C=C bond in textbooks or online: 611 kJ/mol. This bond energy includes both σ and π bonds. The bond energy for a C–C σ bond is 347 kJ/mol.

Isomerization requires breaking only the π bond. This means the bond energy of a C–C π bond is:

611 kJ/mol – 347 kJ/mol = 264 kJ/mol

Recall that Avogadro's Number gives us 6.022 × 1023 molecules in 1 mole. This means the energy needed to break a C–C π bond in one molecule of cis-2-butene is:

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Problem Details

cis-2-Butene isomerizes to trans-2-butene via the following reaction The figure shows the reaction of isomerization. The reactant is a CC double bond. Each carbon has a hydrogen atom attached below the double bond and a -CH3 group attached above the double bond. The product is a CC double bond with a hydrogen atom attached below the double bond to the first carbon and above the double bond to the second carbon. Also, it has a -CH3 group attached above the double bond to the first carbon and attached below the double bond to the second carbon..

If the energy for isomerization came from light, what minimum frequency of light would be required?

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What scientific concept do you need to know in order to solve this problem?

Our tutors have indicated that to solve this problem you will need to apply the Bond Energy concept. If you need more Bond Energy practice, you can also practice Bond Energy practice problems.

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Based on our data, we think this problem is relevant for Professor Camden's class at NOTRE DAME.