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Substitution vs. Elimination Reactions: Predict the outcome Virtual Lab

Join Dr. One in the lab to investigate how several types of substitutions and eliminations are competing with each other in organic chemistry. Predict, mix and observe the outcome!

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Substitution vs. Elimination Reactions: Predict the outcome

About this Simulation

Have you ever mixed some chemicals and the result was alkynes of trouble? In this simulation, you will extend your knowledge of nucleophilic substitution and elimination reactions, and work with which reaction type will be dominant under different reaction conditions.

Brush up on the reactions

Your main mission in this simulation will be to solve a series of challenges revolving around substitution and elimination reactions, given by Dr. One, your virtual lab assistance. You will start by brushing up on your knowledge of the reactions, revisiting the SN1, SN2, E1 and E2 types. You then move to the main lab room, where the chemistry materials you need to solve the challenges awaits you.

Predict the outcome

The tricky thing with substitution and elimination reactions is that they are often in competition with each other for specific combinations of reactants. Working with a set of alkyl halides and nucleophiles/bases, you will be challenged to form and test hypotheses about which reaction type will be dominant, or which product will be the major one. You can test your assumptions freely by trying out any conceivable combination of the available chemicals, and if you don’t get the expected product, you can always just reset the reaction vessel and try again!

In the final challenge, Dr. One will simply ask you a series of quiz questions on the topic. You might already know the answers by then, but if not, you can continue to explore the reactions using the materials on your workbench.

Solving the puzzle

Only by carefully considering the different reaction conditions will you be able to complete your mission. Dr. One will, of course, be there to assist you as you move through the challenges, and you can always head to the theory pages to dive further into the reactions.

Will you be able to figure out how substitution and elimination reactions compete?

Learning Objectives

At the end of this simulation, you will be able to:

  • Explain the main differences between elimination (E1 and E2) and substitution reactions (SN1 and SN2)

  • Predict the reaction type and product for reaction conditions that could lead to either of the SN1, SN2, E1, or E2 type reactions

Techniques in Lab

At the end of this simulation, you will be able to:

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Substitution vs. Elimination Reactions: Predict the outcome

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