1. The problem statement, all variables and given/known data
Lets say you have 1 liter of 2 mol/L methane and the same amount of chlorine. Lets also say that both are liquids since those are most likely to react. Now the only way they can both be liquids is if the temperature is as cold as an antarctic winter so this is not aqueous. Gases more often *Ignore me, I am impatient* the wrong way and solids don't react unless it is oxidization or dissolving.
Now the initiation step is forming the first molecule of HCl and Methyl.
Now the methyl and chlorine atom really want to react and for chloromethane
Now here are the questions.
How much chloromethane, dichloromethane, trichloromethane, and tetrachloromethane will there be?
How much of the more complicated alkanes like ethane and propane will there be?
How many molecules made up of more complicated alkanes and chlorine will there be?
Will at some point the chlorine go back to its normal state and the hydrogen go back to the carbon so that you have just methane, ethane, propane etc?
2. Relevant equations
CH4 + Cl2 = HCl + CH3Cl(this continues up to tetrachloromethane)
2 CH3Cl = Cl2 + C2H6(this can continue for much longer than the previous one can)
3. The attempt at a solution
2 M CH4 + 2 M Cl2 = 2 M HCL + 2 M CH3 + 2 M Cl
2 M Cl + 2 M CH3 = 2 M CH3Cl
2 M CH3Cl * 2 CH3Cl = 1 M C2H6 + 1 M Cl2
2 M HCl = 2 M H2 + 2 M Cl2
This obviously can't happen because than we have more chlorine than we started out with. Why? well that 1 M Cl2 from ethane + 2 M Cl2 from HCl is = 3 M Cl2 and we started with 2 M Cl2. Just like the number of each element the molarity has to be balanced. This is where I am stuck is figuring out the molarity of each compound at each step of the process not the compounds themselves.
If I were actually doing this I would need layers and layers of protection from the cold and poisinous chlorine(which will likely boil as I put it in but not so much that the molarity significantly decreases)
If this were aqueous would there be some likelihood(even if it is low) of Chlorine snatching a hydrogen from the water instead of from the methane and carboxylic acids, ethers, and alcohols starting to form as well as ethane, isopropyl groups, propane, butane etc?
Now the polymerization process is likely to continue to icosane but might reach icosahectane which is a 120 carbon straight chain alkane. Than of course you have all these branched chain alkanes.
Would any alkenes, alkynes, benzene derivatives, and toluene derivatives form?
I would need to add liquid oxygen, liquid nitrogen, liquid sulphur, liquid phosphorus, and liquid boron to get the rest of the carbon compounds if I was interested in those but would the phosphorus I put in be in the form of phosphate which is PO4? If so do I really need to add liquid oxygen to form
(Methyl ethyl ketone)
if I have liquid phosphate?
As for nitrogen here is the list:
Here is the list for sulphur:
Here is the list for phosphorus:
Here is the list for boron: