Problem: The following compounds have similar molecular weights. Which has the highest boiling point.A)        CH3CH=OB)        C2H5OHC)        CH3OCH3D)        CH3CH2CH3

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We’re being asked to determine the compound with the highest boiling point among the choices.


Recall that the boiling and melting point of a compound depends primarily on its mass and intermolecular forces. The types of intermolecular forces (IMF) are:

1. Hydrogen bonding – occurs in compounds where hydrogen is directly connected to an electronegative element such as N, O, or F; strongest IMF

2. Dipole-dipole interaction – occurs between two polar covalent compounds; 2nd strongest IMF

3. London dispersion forces – occurs in all compounds and is the primary IMF exhibited by nonpolar compounds; weakest IMF


Since the given compounds have similar molecular weights, we only need to determine the type of IMF present.


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Problem Details

The following compounds have similar molecular weights. Which has the highest boiling point.

A)        CH3CH=O

B)        C2H5OH

C)        CH3OCH3

D)        CH3CH2CH3