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Hi! From what I understood from the lectures I think formal charge is used to mainly keep track of the charge of atoms and molecules while drawing the lewis structures. From there I think you can use the charge to predict things about the atoms and molecules, such as reactivity.
I am also a bit confused with formal charge. To my understanding, I know that calculating the FC of single atoms is important when checking the stability of a molecule because rearranging bonds to have atoms with FCs of zero creates a more table structure overall. Hopefully that was a bit helpful!
The formal charge is a charge that we assign to individual atoms that help us determine the correct lewis structure. We can tell if a structure is accurate if all the formal charges in a molecule add up to the total charge. But we also need to look for formal charges that are closest to zero because energy is needed to separate charge. Hope this helps.
The formal charge of an atom in a molecule will tells you the charge associated with it. We use them to determine the best Lewis Structure for a molecule that has different possibilities. We want the lowest energy, and separating charges takes energy, therefore we want FC's of 0 ideally.
The formal charge is important because it shows where there are more or less electrons. For example, if an oxygen atom has three lone pairs of electrons and one bond, it would have a negative formal charge. This is because oxygen would normally only have two lone pairs of electrons along with two more electrons that could be used for bonding (adding up to 6 valance electrons)
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