Why does something like 2,2-dimethylpropane have a much higher melting point than butan-1-ol?

I know that butan-1-ol has a hydroxyl group, and is capable of hydrogen bonding, and I know that 2,2-dimethylpropane is a compact symmetrical molecule, but I don't really see how shape and compatibility have such a huge factor on melting point compared to hydrogen bonding; or is this a special case?


1 Answer 1


You are simply comparing the wrong compounds to see the effect of a hydroxyl group. Compare tertiary butyl alcohol to neopentane. While you are at it compare melting and boiling points of the isomeric pentanes and butanols to get a general idea of the effects of molecular shapes.


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