Compound X has 3 carbon atoms in one molecule. It contains a primary alcohol and a carboxylic acid functional group.

Draw the displayed formula of Compound X.

Help! Condensed formula is fine for me!

  1. Draw a chain of three carbon atoms.
  2. Make one of them $\ce{COOH}$. You have two carbon atoms to choose from.
  3. Attach $\ce{OH}$ to one of the remaining carbon atoms to make it a primary alcohol. You have one carbon atom to choose from.
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    $\begingroup$ So I have OH on one end and COOH on the other end, am I correct? OH-CH2CH2-COOH $\endgroup$ – Benedict Feb 24 '16 at 11:38
  • $\begingroup$ @Benedict Based on your description, I came to the same conclusion :) We learn: If in doubt, draw structures! If you found my hints helpful, please mark my answer as accepted. Btw, welcome to Chemistry.SE! $\endgroup$ – Klaus-Dieter Warzecha Feb 24 '16 at 11:46
  • $\begingroup$ Hi, I would like to ask one more thing. Is it possible for Compound X to go through self-polymerization? A condensation polymerization? $\endgroup$ – Benedict Feb 24 '16 at 11:56
  • $\begingroup$ @Benedict Yes :) You're right, the condensation will form chains with a repeating ester motive. $\endgroup$ – Klaus-Dieter Warzecha Feb 24 '16 at 12:00

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