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QUESTION

# What are halides? What are some examples of them?

Halides are anions of the Group 17 elements, the halogens.

The halogen elements are diatomic molecules, X_2, that can be easily reduced:

X_2 + 2e^(-) rarr 2X^-

The anions are the so-called halides: F^-, Cl^-, Br^-, etc.

Of course, if you have a negatively charged species, there must be a positively charged species as well to balance the charge, typically a metal cation, Na^+, Mg^(2+) etc. The best known halide is the stuff you put on your fish and chips :

Of course, I could broaden my horizons a little bit, and consider organic halides. A halogen atom can be tacked on to an alkyl or hydrocarbyl group to give an organic halide, where the halide takes the place of a hydrogen. With hydrocarbons, this is usually the first step of a synthesis, because once the halogen group is introduced (Cl or Br), you can start doing selective chemistry on the organic chain.