From Wikipedia, the free encyclopedia
Jump to: navigation, search
Skeletal formula of tetra-tert-butylmethane
3D model (Jmol) Interactive image
ChemSpider 14288112 YesY
PubChem 14123361
Molar mass 240.48 g·mol−1
Related compounds
Related alkanes
Except where otherwise noted, data are given for materials in their standard state (at 25 °C [77 °F], 100 kPa).
YesY verify (what is YesYN ?)
Infobox references

Tetra-tert-butylmethane is a hypothetical organic compound with formula C17H36, or ((H3C-)3C-)4C. It would be an alkane, specifically the most compact branched isomer of heptadecane. The systematic name is 3,3-Di-tert-butyl-2,2,4,4-tetramethylpentane.

This compound is of interest because it is believed to be the smallest saturated and acyclic hydrocarbon that cannot exist (due to steric hindrance).[1] However calculations suggest that the molecule would be stable, with C–C bonds of 0.1661 nm — longer than the typical C−C bond but still shorter than those found in some other real molecules.[2]


  1. ^ da Silva, K.M.; Goodman, J.M. (2005). "What is the smallest saturated acyclic alkane that cannot be made?". Journal of Chemical and Information Modeling. 45 (1): 81–87. doi:10.1021/ci0497657. PMID 15667132. 
  2. ^ Cheng, M-F; Li, W-K (2003). "Structural and energetics studies of tri- and tetra-tert-butylmethane". Journal of Physical Chemistry A. 78 (1): 5492–5498. doi:10.1021/jp034879r.