The Last Globally Stable Extended Alkane
Citable Link (URL):http://resolver.sub.uni-goettingen.de/purl?gs-1/9894
Mother of all folding: Cold isolated linear alkanes CnH2n+2 prefer an extended all-trans conformation before cohesive forces between the chain ends induce a folded hairpin structure for longer chains. It is shown by Raman spectroscopy at 100–150 K that the folded structure becomes more stable beyond nC=17 or 18 carbon atoms. High-level quantum-chemical calculations yield nC=17±1 as the critical chain length.