Tertiary carbon

From Wikipedia, the free encyclopedia
Jump to navigation Jump to search
tertiary Carbon
Isobutan (Tertiäre Kohlenstoffatome) V1.svg
Structural formula of isobutane (tertiary carbon is highlighted red)

A tertiary carbon atom is a carbon atom bound to three other carbon atoms.[1] For this reason, tertiary carbon atoms are found only in hydrocarbons containing at least four carbon atoms. Tertiary carbon atoms can occur, for example, in branched alkanes, but not in linear alkanes.[2]

primary carbon secondary carbon tertiary carbon quaternary carbon
General structure
(R = Organyl group)
frameless=1.0 frameless=1.0 frameless=1.0 frameless=1.0
Structural formula
frameless=1.0 frameless=1.0 frameless=1.0 frameless=1.0


  1. ^ Smith, Janice Gorzynski (2011). "Chapter 4 Alkanes". Organic chemistry (Book) (3rd ed.). New York, NY: McGraw-Hill. p. 116. ISBN 978-0-07-337562-5.
  2. ^ Hans Peter Latscha, Uli Kazmaier, Helmut Alfons Klein (2016) (in German), Organische Chemie: Chemie-Basiswissen II (7. Auflage ed.), Berlin: Springer Spektrum, p. 40, ISBN 978-3-662-46180-8