What is the valence of carbon atoms in alkanes?

Carbon has 4 electrons in its outer shell, so it can gain a more stable state by losing all those electrons to form the C4 + ion, or it can gain 4 electrons by forming 4 covalent bonds. The first does not happen in connections because the required energy is too high. The latter is very common and gives carbon a covalent valence of 4. This is not shown anywhere better than in alkanes, where each carbon atom forms 4 covalent bonds either with adjacent carbon atoms or with hydrogen atoms. This makes it easy to predict the molecular formula of alkanes.

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