• My book says, methyl chloride, methyl bromide, ethyl chloride and some cholorofluromethanes are gases at room temperature, whereas higher members are liquids or solids. Why?
  • With this question, I got another question for which the former would be subset. How to determine whether a compound is gas or liquid or solid (assume room temperature)? Thinking about this question, I thought molecular force between the molecules is going to be the key for answer of this query door. But how to determine, whether a compound has stronger intermolecular force between the molecules or not?
  • We have another way to check if a compound is gas or solid or liquid, i.e. entropy (randomness), which is given by heat gained or lost divided by temperature. In general, compound which has greater randomness will be gas. We can expect most of the compounds to be gases, which have standard molar entropy greater than $200\ \mathrm{J K^{-1} mol^{-1}}$ at $298\ \mathrm{K}$.
  • Entropy concept brings many questions under light, for example, $\ce{H2}$ gas has standard molar entropy of $130.7\ \mathrm{JK^{-1}mol^{-1}}$, which is lesser than $\ce{Br2}$ liquid, which has standard molar entropy of $152.3\ \mathrm{JK^{-1}mol^{-1}}$. We would had expected $\ce{H2}$ gas to have greater randomness than $\ce{Br2}$ liquid, because gases should have greater randomness than liquids. Anyway it becomes difficult, to determine a compound as solid or liquid or gas using entropy.


  • http://chemed.chem.purdue.edu/genchem/topicreview/bp/ch4/gases1.html#roomt (This link helps to determine a compound as gas, but leads to still more questions like: Why most non metals are gases? Why all the gases are covalent bonded that contain two or more non metals? Why gases are defined to have low molecular weights, in spite of knowing that molecular interactions matter? Can’t ionic bonded compounds be gases?)

  • I will try to find list of solid and liquid compounds, but now I have just the above link. If any one have links related to this particular topic, they are welcome.


As the molecular weight increases (more halogens or carbon atoms), so does the electron density and consequently the van-der-waals forces(dispersion forces) between the molecules rises. These forces increase intermolecular attraction and therefore increase the boiling point. T^his is valid in case of most other organic compounds' homologous series, not just alkyl halides.


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