Formal Charge Vs. Oxidation Number


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Sean Sugai 4E
Posts: 56
Joined: Wed Sep 11, 2019 12:17 am

Formal Charge Vs. Oxidation Number

Postby Sean Sugai 4E » Sun Oct 27, 2019 4:48 pm

Formal charge and oxidation number both give the number of electrons in a compound; in that sense, they are similar conceptually. However, how are they different?

JustinHorriat_4f
Posts: 111
Joined: Wed Sep 18, 2019 12:19 am

Re: Formal Charge Vs. Oxidation Number

Postby JustinHorriat_4f » Sun Oct 27, 2019 4:56 pm

Basically they are very similar the only big difference is that formal charge assumes all the bonding electrons were divided equally between atoms while in oxidation numbers we assign numbers to the more electronegative atom in the bond.

ASetlur_1G
Posts: 101
Joined: Fri Aug 09, 2019 12:17 am

Re: Formal Charge Vs. Oxidation Number

Postby ASetlur_1G » Sun Oct 27, 2019 4:57 pm

For formal charge, you're assuming that the bond is fully covalent and attribute one electron to each atom. For oxidation number, you take into account which atom has the highest electronegativity and attribute the whole shared pair to that atom.

Jared_Yuge
Posts: 100
Joined: Sat Aug 17, 2019 12:17 am

Re: Formal Charge Vs. Oxidation Number

Postby Jared_Yuge » Sun Oct 27, 2019 5:15 pm

We can obtain oxidation numbers by arbitrarily assigning the electrons of each covalent bond to the more electronegative atom in the bond. This is in contrast to the Formal Charge which divides each bonding pair equally without concern for which atom may be more electronegative.

Kimberly Koo 2I
Posts: 99
Joined: Sat Aug 17, 2019 12:17 am

Re: Formal Charge Vs. Oxidation Number

Postby Kimberly Koo 2I » Sun Oct 27, 2019 5:15 pm

Oxidation numbers are found by assigning the electrons in the covalent bond to the more electronegative atom in the bond. The formal charge is different because the number isn't determined by which atom is more electronegative.


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