The element carbon is found naturally in several forms. What are some of these forms?

1 Answer
May 16, 2017

There are 4 major carbon allotropes:


There are 4 major carbon allotropes:

  1. Diamond - Is a macromolecule, of tetrahedrally arranged, #sp^3#-hybridized carbon atoms
  2. Graphene - is a planar macromolecule, in which carbons are #sp^2#-hybridized and arranged in a trigonal planar fashion
  3. Graphite - is a group of graphene molecules layered one over the other and held together by weak intermolecular forces. (Look at the pencil you may be holding in your hand; what you write with is essentially graphite)
  4. Fullerenes :
    a. #C_60# (a.k.a. Buckminster or Bucky balls) - consists of 60 #sp^2#-hybridized carbon atoms that are arranged in pentagons
    and hexagons, to form at sphere
    b. Carbon nanotubes - these essentially look like rolled up graphene sheets, that form a tube.

Note, that there are many more. But this is a sample of some of the most common, and/or most interesting