Carbon and Its Compounds Class 10

Carbon and its Compounds

Science is a scoring subject and the chapter carbon and its compounds class 10 is one such chapter. If you prepare well and are thorough with your notes, you will excel at your exam. We have prepared notes for you on this chapter to help you study well for your upcoming exam.  Read this blog to find out more about carbon and its compounds class 10. 

Must Read: Acids, Bases And Salts Class 10

What is Carbon?

In the chapter of Carbon and Compounds class 10, we got to know that all life forms and living structures are carbon-based. The quantity of carbon present in the Earth’s crust and the atmosphere is very small. The Earth’s crust contains only 0.02 per cent carbon in the form of minerals (such as carbonates, bicarbonates, coal and petroleum) and the atmosphere contains 0.03 per cent carbon dioxide. Solve all your doubts here related to Science here: NCERT Class 10 Science Solutions

What is Covalent Bond? 

The covalent bond is a type of bond formation that involves sharing of electrons between 2 atoms. Carbon forms a covalent bond with other atoms that exist. As we all know the atomic number of carbon is 6 and its electronic configuration is 2, 4. According to the chapter of Carbon and its Compounds class 10, to attain a noble gas configuration, carbon could either gain 4 electrons or loose its 4 electrons from its valence shell. Having said that, it is difficult for a carbon atom to gain or lose its valence electrons. It is so because it is very difficult to hold extra electrons as this would require a large amount of energy to remove and add four electrons. 

Characteristics of Covalent Compounds

According to the chapter of Carbon and its Compounds class 10, these are the following characteristics of covalent bond compounds:

  • These compounds are molecular (i.e., they occur as single molecules)
  • They are insoluble in water and soluble in benzene, kerosene, gasoline and so on.
  • These compounds are not a good electrical conductor as np charged particles are formed.
  • These compounds have a low melting point and boiling point because of comparatively weaker intermolecular forces between molecules. 

Allotropes of Carbon

The property due to which different forms of an element that has the same chemical properties but different physical properties are known as Allotropy and its various forms are known as allotropes. According to the chapter of Carbon and its Compounds class 10, carbon atom exists in 2 allotropic forms i.e.:

  • Crystalline forms such as diamond and graphite
  • Amorphous form such as coal, charcoal, lamp black etc. 
  • Fullerenes 

Also check out: Class 10 Chemical Reactions and Equations

Two Important Properties of Carbon

According to the chapter of Carbon and its Compounds class 10, there are 2 of the most important properties of carbon that is:

  • Catenation: this is a property of carbon that allows it to form long chains, branched chains and closed rings. By the help of this property, carbon can link their atoms via the help of covalent bonding. 
  • Tetravalency: tetravalency is another important property of carbon atom. As we all know that carbon is an atom that has 4 valence electrons. Since carbon can neither lose nor gain its valence electrons to attain an octet, it forms a covalent bond via sharing its 4 valence electrons with other atoms. 
Carbon and its compounds class 10
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Saturated and Unsaturated Carbon Compounds

Next in Carbon and its compounds class 10, we look at the properties and features of saturated and unsaturated carbon compounds. They are mentioned below: 

  • Saturated carbon compounds: These are those compounds in which the carbon atoms’ valencies are satisfied by a single bond between them. These are organic compounds in which carbon atoms are bonded together having a single bond only and use hydrogen atoms to satisfy the remaining valencies of carbon. They can be straight-chain, branched-chain or cyclic. For example propane C3H
Saturated Carbon Compounds
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  • Unsaturated Carbon Compounds: Unsaturated carbon compounds are those compounds whose carbon atoms valencies are not satisfied via a single bond. Hence, in order to satisfy their valencies and octet, they either form a double or a triple bond. The unsaturated hydrocarbons which have one or more than one double bonds are called alkenes and those containing one or more than one triple bonds are known as alkynes. Examples
    • Alkene: CH2=CH2 (Ethene)
    • Alkyne: CH≡CH (Ethyne)

Some Important Terminologies 

Here are some important terminologies that find mention in Carbon and its compounds class 10. They are mentioned below: 

  • Straight chain compounds: Those compounds that contain a straight chain of carbon atoms. Example: butane, pentane 
  • Branched-chain compounds: These are those compounds which have branched carbon compounds. Examples: iso-butane, isopentane etc.
  • Closed chain or ring compounds: These are those compounds that have a cyclic, ring or closed chain of carbon atoms such as in cyclopentane, cyclobutane etc.
  • Hydrocarbons: Those compounds which contain or have only carbon and hydrogen atoms are known as hydrocarbons such as alkenes that are represented as CnH2n and alkynes, that are represented as CnH2n-2.

Saturated hydrocarbons

Mentioned below is a picture showing saturated hydrocarbons

Carbon and its compounds class 10 - important terminologies
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Saturated Hydrocarbons
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Functional Groups

Next in Carbon and its compounds class 10, we talk about functional groups. 

An atom or a group of atoms that provides some characteristic properties to the compound is known as a functional group. The functional group is attached to the carbon chain by valency by substituting one or more hydrogen atoms.

Carbon and its compounds class 10 - Functional Groups
Image Source: NCERT

Homologous Series

As per the chapter of Carbon and its Compounds class 10, a homologous series is a series or a family of organic compounds that have a similar or same functional group. Apart from having the same functional group, they also have similar chemical properties and also a successive (adjacent) member of which differ by a —CH2 unit or 14 mass units, in simple words, the individual members of the series are called homologous.

Homologous Series
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Also read: Metals and Non-Metals Class 10 Notes


According to Carbon and its compounds class 10, all carbon compounds may have a common name, a systematic name and also an IUPAC name. The IUPAC (International Union of Pure and Applied Chemistry) names are those names that are universally adopted. The IUPAC name of organic compounds consists of three parts:

  • Prefix – word root – Suffix
Nomenclature - Carbon and its compounds
Image Source: NCERT

Also, the word root in IUPAC name denotes the number of carbon atoms in the longest selected parent chain. 

Chain length Word root
1 C Meth
2 C Eth
3 C Prop
4 C But
5 C Pent
6 C Hex

According to the chapter of carbon and its compounds class 10, the nomenclature of the carbon compounds can be done on the basis of certain rules and steps. These are:

  • First and foremost, identify the number of carbon atoms in compounds.
  • After that, identify the longest chain in it.
  • Then identify the functional group. The functional group can be identified using the suffix or prefix.
  • Remember that the cyclic hydrocarbons are designed by prefix cyclo. 
  • If there are at least two different substituents, they are listed in alphabetic order.
  • If the same substituent occurs several times, the location of each point on which the substituent occurs is provided.

The Chemical Properties of Carbon Compounds

According to Carbon and its compounds class 10, there are many chemical properties to carbon compounds. We have tabulated them below for you for easy reference. 

1. Combustion The combustion properties of carbon and its compounds states that the carbon compounds undergo a combustion reaction to produce C02 or carbon dioxide and H2O or water with the evolution of heat and light. 
CH4 +O2 > CO2 + 2O + heat and light
2. Oxidation According to this chemical property of carbon and its compounds, alcohol can be oxidized to aldehydes whereas aldehydes, in turn, can be oxidized to a carboxylic acid. An oxidizing agent such as potassium permanganate can be used for oxidation.
3. Addition reaction According to this chemical property of carbon and its compounds, the unsaturated hydrocarbons that are alkenes and alkynes undergo an addition reaction in the presence of catalysts. 
4. Substitution reaction According to this chemical property of carbon and its compounds, the saturated hydrocarbons perform or give a substitution reaction like methane in presence of sunlight undergo chlorination.
Image Source: NCERT

Ethanol vs Ethanoic Acid

Next in the chapter Carbon and its compounds class 10, we look at the various differences between ethanol and ethanoic acid. They are mentioned below.

  • According to the chapter of carbon and its compound class 10, the ethanol is an important carbon compound which is volatile in nature. Apart from being volatile in nature, it also has a low melting point. It reacts with sodium (Na) to form sodium ethoxide.
Image Source: NCERT

Having said that, the dehydration of ethanol in the presence of hot sulphuric acid forms alkene.

Ethanoic Acid - Carbon and its compounds class 10
Image Source: NCERT
  • On the other hand, the ethanoic acid which is another important carbon compound is a colourless liquid. When pure ethanoic acid freezes like a block of ice, we call it as glacial acetic acid. It is formed at a temperature of about 16.6 degrees C. Ethanoic acid or acetic acid when reacts with ethanol forms an ester that has a sweet smell. The reaction of this ester with a strong base is used to form soap and this process is known as saponification. Acetic acid also reacts with a strong base to form sodium acetate and water.


Soap vs Detergent 

The chapter Carbon and its compounds class 10, further talks about the many differences in properties between soap and detergent. They are tabulated below.

Soap  Detergent 
Sodium or potassium salt of a carboxylic
acid is known as Soap.
Detergents are sulphonate or
ammonium salt of a long chain of carboxylic acid.
It is prepared by the reaction of oils/fats
with sodium hydroxide solution 
It is prepared by petroleum hydrocarbons 
Soaps generally don’t produce lather with
hard water and can only produce lather with soft water. 
Detergents can produce lather in hard and soft water both. 
The cleaning capacity of soap is less effective as compared to detergents.  The cleaning capacity of detergents is more. 
Soap vs Detergent
Image Source: NCERT

Explore: Class 10 Science Chemical Reactions and Equations

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