Ethene vs Ethane

Selected by the US National Science Teachers Association

The simplest class of organic compounds are the alkanes. An alkane is a hydrocarbon (a compound that contains only carbon and hydrogen) containing only single bonds.

For example, ethane.

The ethane molecule

An alkene is a hydrocarbon that contains a double bond.

For example, ethene.

The ethene molecule
An 'alkyne' is a hydrocarbon that contains a carbon carbon triple bond.

For example, ethyne.

The ethyne molecule (ethyne is also known as acetylene)