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If something is highly electronegative, electrons from another ion will be pulled away, distorting the shape. A good example of this is XeF4, where the F molecules are highly electronegative and so the electrons will be pulled to the F.
Distortion, which is proportional to the polarizability of electrons, depends on the number of electrons and the size of the atom or molecule. Therefore, distortion affects the interaction potential energy because the larger the distortion in electron clouds, the greater the potential energy due to the ability of fluctuating electron distribution resulting in fluctuating dipole moments. The more electrons and the larger the atom, a greater distortion occurs because there are more possibilities for interactions of electrons with other electrons in other molecules that cause stronger attractive interactions between the two.
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