Is a screwdriver an example of an object that is chiral or achiral? Explain.

Question:

Is a screwdriver an example of an object that is chiral or achiral? Explain.

Molecular Symmetry:

A symmetry element is a concept in molecular symmetry that is associated with a line, plane, or point by which a symmetry operation can be performed. A symmetry operation can be a rotation, reflection, etc which leaves the object in a configuration that is indistinguishable and superimposable on the original configuration of the object. An example of a symmetry operation is the identity operation denoted by E.

Answer and Explanation: 1

A screwdriver is an achiral object.

A screwdriver possesses an infinite-fold proper axis of rotation. In addition, it does not possess an inversion center. It belongs to the {eq}\rm C_{ \infty v }{/eq} point group. Substances that belong to this point group are polar and achiral. For example, HCl also belongs to this point group. HCl is polar and achiral. Another method to determine whether the screwdriver is chiral or achiral is to compare the screwdriver to its mirror image. Since its mirror image is superimposable, it is not chiral.


Learn more about this topic:

Loading...
Chiral vs. Achiral: Definition & Examples

from

Chapter 2 / Lesson 15
44K

Identifying chiral and achiral objects, including molecules, requires looking at many pictures, which is what you'll do in this lesson. You'll also learn the definitions of these terms and use the definitions to distinguish between chiral and achiral molecules.


Recommended Lessons and Courses for You

Explore our homework questions and answers library