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tom tom
What are free radicals? View All


10 years ago - 8 months left to answer. - 2 responses - Report Abuse
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Mike
For the most part, stable molecules contain two (pairs) of electrons. When a chemical reaction breaks and takes place the bonds that hold paired electrons together are produced called free radicals. Free radicals have an odd number of electrons, which makes them short lived, unstable, and highly reactive. As these combine with other atoms containing unpaired electrons, more new radicals are created and a chain reaction starts. This process is necessary for the decomposition of various different substances at high temperatures.

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rahul gopinath
In chemistry, radicals (often referred to as free radicals) are atomic or molecular species with unpaired electrons on an otherwise open shell configuration. These unpaired electrons are usually highly reactive, so radicals are likely to take part in chemical reactions. Radicals play an important role in combustion, atmospheric chemistry, polymerization, plasma chemistry, biochemistry, and many other chemical processes, including human physiology. For example, superoxide and nitric oxide regulate many biological processes, such as controlling vascular tone. "Radical" and "free radical" are frequently used interchangeably, however a radical may be trapped within a solvent cage or be otherwise bound. The first organic free radical, the triphenylmethyl radical was identified by Moses Gomberg in 1900 at the University of Michigan.



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