Nucleophile strength

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Nucleophile strength

Postby Jamie_Cole_2N » Sun Mar 05, 2017 11:29 pm

What properties about being nucleophiles make one stronger than the other, I understand how an ion with a larger source of electrons available (and higher polarizability) but how could we explain other examples like why H2O is not stronger than OH- when the book mentions there is only "some correlation between basicity and nucleophilic strength"? What other reasons could explain why OH- is stronger? More lone pairs?

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Re: Nucleophile strength

Postby Swati_Sharma_2D » Mon Mar 06, 2017 12:49 am


I would say that one of the main reasons OH- is more nucleophilic is the fact that it has an overall negative charge, which signifies that it can more easily attract positively charged atoms than water which does not have an overall negative charge.

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Re: Nucleophile strength

Postby Chem_Mod » Mon Mar 06, 2017 11:33 am

The easiest indicator of strength is the charge. If you're comparing two nucleophiles that have the same charge, then you want to look at polarizability and electron density.

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