Applicable to questions about the ability of a molecule (or class of molecules) to be superimposed on their mirror image(s).

Tag usage

This tag should be used on questions about:

  • Whether a molecule or class of molecules is chiral
  • Group theoretical treatments of chirality
  • Chirality in biomolecules e.g. DNA, proteins
  • The effect of chirality on properties or the reactions of chiral compounds

Definition

Chirality is defined in the IUPAC Gold Book as:

The geometric property of a rigid object (or spatial arrangement of points or atoms) of being non-superposable on its mirror image; such an object has no symmetry elements of the second kind (a mirror plane, σ = S1, a centre of inversion, i = S2, a rotation-reflection axis, S2n). If the object is superposable on its mirror image the object is described as being achiral.

Further reading

The question: What is the perfect definition for chirality? and the answers therein provide an excellent overview of chirality.

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