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In organic chemistry, compounds composed of carbon and hydrogen are divided into two classes: aromatic compounds, which contain benzene and other similar compounds, and aliphatic compounds (G. aleiphar, fat, oil), which do not. In aliphatic compounds, carbon atoms can be joined together in straight chains, branched chains, or rings. They can be joined by single bonds (alkanes), double bonds (alkenes), or triple bonds (alkynes). Besides hydrogen, other elements can be bound to the carbon chain, the most common being oxygen, nitrogen, sulfur, and chlorine.
Most aliphatic compounds are flammable, thus allowing hydrocarbons such as methane to fuel Bunsen burners in the laboratory, whereas acetylene is used in welding.
|This article is licensed under the GNU Free Documentation License. It uses material from the Wikipedia article "Aliphatic_compound". A list of authors is available in Wikipedia.|