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Instanious interactions the intermedaite

  1. Oct 8, 2004 #1
    Instanious interactions and the intermedaite

    Hi all, I had some question evolving the atomic interactions of subsition reactions.

    For example OH- + CH3CH2Cl= CH3CH2OH + Cl-

    The intermedaite in this reaction is OHCH3CHCL The Cl is leaving at the exact same moment that the OH- is bing to the centeral C atom. How is this possible? Does it volate Ensteins Law of Speical Relativity ( Nothing can go faster than light)

    Thank you for your time
    Last edited: Oct 8, 2004
  2. jcsd
  3. Oct 9, 2004 #2
    You do not need to worry about special relativity affecting chemistry, unless you're dealing with fine structure or explaining the behavior of gold/mercury. There is probably a delay involved, but it is completely negligible on the time scales of the larger chemical reaction. The molecules likely go through many intermediate, distorted shapes before the end products are created, but these things happen so fast that you can assume they are instantaneous for the intents and purposes of chemistry.
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