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I remember from high school chemistry that double bonds are shorter than single bonds. If that's the case, could someone explain why the bond lengths in resonance structures are experimentally the same bond length? I didn't quite get that.
Realistically, resonance structures don't actually exist; they're just a way of showing delocalized electrons where bonding cannot be expressed with just one lewis structure. Bond lengths are all experimentally the same length (the average of all the bond lengths in the atoms actually) in order to achieve more stable bonds (which seems to be the trend in chemical bonds).
I agree with Albert, since it becomes a hybrid, the bond lengths would all average out and so maybe that's why they are all the same.
To add onto this, Lewis structures are very very simple drawings of an atom. Therefore, an atom is an average of all the different resonance structures as we can never have an exact idea where an electron is in an atom. Albert is correct when he states that experimentally bond lengths are the same in order to maintain stability.
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