Formal Charge


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somyapanchal1D
Posts: 34
Joined: Mon Jun 17, 2019 7:23 am

Formal Charge

Postby somyapanchal1D » Thu Jul 11, 2019 9:50 pm

Can someone explain what exactly formal charge is, and what is the purpose of calculating it? Why is it most favorable for formal charge to be between -1 and 1?

Kevin To 1B
Posts: 32
Joined: Sat Feb 02, 2019 12:15 am

Re: Formal Charge

Postby Kevin To 1B » Fri Jul 12, 2019 1:02 am

A formal charge is a comparison of electrons "owned" by an atom in a Lewis structure versus the number of electrons possessed by the same atom in its unbound, free atomic state. With formal charge, the molecule's net charge could be determined.

Karolina herrera1F
Posts: 33
Joined: Sat Feb 02, 2019 12:15 am

Re: Formal Charge

Postby Karolina herrera1F » Fri Jul 12, 2019 7:35 pm

It is most favorable because formal charge is the charge assigned to an atom in a molecule, assuming that electrons in al chemical bonds are shared equally between atoms, regardless of relative electronegativity.

Gwynneth Orlino 1B
Posts: 26
Joined: Wed Nov 21, 2018 12:18 am

Re: Formal Charge

Postby Gwynneth Orlino 1B » Fri Jul 12, 2019 8:37 pm

Formal charges are important in determining the best Lewis structure for a molecule with the formal charge of each atom being close to zero as possible. The lower the formal charges are, the more stable the structure.

David Zhang 1B
Posts: 48
Joined: Mon Jun 17, 2019 7:23 am

Re: Formal Charge

Postby David Zhang 1B » Fri Jul 12, 2019 9:52 pm

It's the charge on each individual atom that can be calculated after drawing a Lewis structure. Each variation of the Lewis structure has different formal charges and the structure with the most neutral charge is often the best structure.

Nick Fiorentino 1E
Posts: 102
Joined: Wed Sep 18, 2019 12:16 am

Re: Formal Charge

Postby Nick Fiorentino 1E » Fri Oct 25, 2019 3:59 pm

The formal charge is the charge on each atom and it is calculated after a Lewis structure is made. They are useful to calculate so you know "good" you structure is; the closer the formal charge is to zero, the better the model

Bradley Whitworth 4B
Posts: 54
Joined: Sat Jul 20, 2019 12:17 am

Re: Formal Charge

Postby Bradley Whitworth 4B » Fri Oct 25, 2019 4:07 pm

Formal charge is simply a comparison of the number of electrons around an atom in its neutral state to the same atom bonded in a molecule. It is important to note that calculating formal charge within a molecule does not account for electronegativity, it assumes electrons are shared evenly. It is important to calculate formal charge because that information paired with our knowledge of electronegativity, octet exceptions, and stability, helps us figure out the most stable state of a molecule which would essentially be how we would actually see it in real life.


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