A compound is any substance that is made by two or more parts or components to form a more complex one. Usually you use many chemicals on a day-to-day basis, such as sodium chloride (caustic soda) and other items with sodium chloride (caustic soda, laundry detergent, etc.) As a matter of fact, many of your common products contain a combination of NaCl and various other chemicals and salts.
The question of what is a compound today has many answers depending upon how the question is asked. In the simplest case, a compound is anything made by dissolving or combined in different chemical substances with certain proportions of each component. There are many different kinds of molecules and many different ways these molecules can be combined. However, generally speaking, a molecule is a two-atom or larger sub-structure of a larger component. Most people are familiar with the example of sodium chloride. This is often the base material used in the majority of chemical substances and products.
Compounds can be made by combining different elements of the same element or even different elements of different elements and still come out together as a complete substance. The question then is, what is a compound composed of if different components of similar size and shape are allowed to join? The answer depends upon what kinds of atoms and molecules are present.
Carbon dioxide is a popular question, when people ask what is a compound. If we take the HFCS family as an example and combine it with carbon dioxide, we have a type of compound. HFCS stands for hydrocarbons obtained from crude oil or natural gas. In this case, the molecule has two carbon atoms and six hydrogen atoms bonded together at the single position of the triple bond, or C-H, rather than at the single position of the C atom, or a single bond, or G-C.
One of the most common examples of what is a compound is gasoline. Just as carbon dioxide combines with oxygen to create carbon monoxide, or CO, the same thing happens with hydrogen and oxygen to create water. Many of today’s vehicles are designed to use less gasoline than those of decades ago because of advances in gas mileage, but they still contain a mixture of gasoline and air, known as hydrocarbons. Hydrocarbons, as described above, are the main components of what is a compound.
A different example of what is a compound is sugar. It is composed of sugar molecules of varying sizes that have been electrically bonded together. In this case, the C-bond is the carbon bonding with the H-bond, or hydrogen bonding with the C-carbide. The number of C-bonds and H-bonds are determined by the number of fixed ratio of atoms, which are a number known as the carbon-to-carbon bond ratio. Each atom has a different, set number of bonds that must be broken before the molecule can join with another.
A compound may also consist of one or more aromatic elements, which are atoms with a single proton, instead of a single electron. These aromatic elements are called covalent bonds. A covalent bond is an atom that combines with another covalent bond to form another element, regardless of what is in either bonds. There are four different types of covalent bonds, which are solid, polar, intramolecular, and ionic bonds. A covalent bond is a compound where each of the component elements has a similar electrone count, or number of protons, with each having a similar, or identical, electron being present.
A non-covalent bond is one in which the elements combine chemically, without combining with any other compounds. A compound can be made from different combinations of non-covalent elements, or from a combination of different covalent and non-covalent elements. It is important to remember that, for many compound analysis techniques, the amount of each chemical that is needed, in order to create a specific compound, is much greater than the amount of the other elements, and this is why many analyzers require the use of a catalyst. In compound analysis, it is often necessary to have a catalyst in order to create a test sample.