Calculating formal charge


Moderators: Chem_Mod, Chem_Admin

Nikita Patra 3J
Posts: 50
Joined: Sat Jul 20, 2019 12:16 am

Calculating formal charge

Postby Nikita Patra 3J » Sun Nov 10, 2019 6:22 pm

Why is that when we count the total number of valence electrons, we count the two electrons in the covalent bond as if either atom has both of them when we consider the octet rule, but when we calculate formal charge, we only count one of the two electrons in the covalent bond?

nehashetty_2G
Posts: 102
Joined: Thu Jul 25, 2019 12:15 am

Re: Calculating formal charge

Postby nehashetty_2G » Sun Nov 10, 2019 6:36 pm

I think that when calculating formal charge, the concept is not to look at how many electrons an atom has, rather it is to look at the number of SHARED bonds that an atom is involved in.

Abigail_Hagen2G
Posts: 107
Joined: Fri Aug 09, 2019 12:17 am

Re: Calculating formal charge

Postby Abigail_Hagen2G » Sun Nov 10, 2019 8:13 pm

Valence electrons just show how many bonds can be formed, while formal charge shows the bonds.

Daniel Yu 1E
Posts: 100
Joined: Sat Aug 24, 2019 12:15 am

Re: Calculating formal charge

Postby Daniel Yu 1E » Sun Nov 10, 2019 10:32 pm

When calculating formal charge, you would count each e- in lone pairs as individual e- but shared e- as a whole because their charge is not solely distributed to one atom.

Cindy Adiwidjaja 1B
Posts: 100
Joined: Sat Jul 20, 2019 12:15 am

Re: Calculating formal charge

Postby Cindy Adiwidjaja 1B » Mon Nov 11, 2019 11:49 am

Another way to think of it is to envision the electrons in the whole lewis structure, not in a singular atom. By looking it at a bigger picture, it will help.


Return to “Formal Charge and Oxidation Numbers”

Who is online

Users browsing this forum: No registered users and 1 guest