# What distinguishes a chiral carbon centre?

Apr 9, 2017

A chiral compound cannot be superimposed upon its mirror image.

#### Explanation:

For the importance of chiral compounds see here. As to how chiral molecules are separated, see here.

Remember for carbon, typically a $C {R}_{1} {R}_{2} {R}_{3} {R}_{4}$ stereoisomer CANNOT be superimposed upon its mirror image. The experiment to separate the stereoisomers is long, and protracted, and difficult.

Apr 11, 2017

All different bonds

#### Explanation:

If you are looking for an easy answer, this is it:

If a carbon has four different groups attached to it, it will be chiral.